Today sees the launch of the taskforce's petition to commit NHS England to accept its five-year survival target
The least survivable cancers – oesophageal, liver, pancreatic, brain, stomach and lung cancer – represent just over one in four common cancer diagnoses in the UK yet claim half of all common cancer deaths each year.
Together, the five charities representing these cancers want to double the five-year survival of the less survivable cancers from 14% to 28% by 2029.
Around 73,000 people are diagnosed with one of these cancers in England every year, yet their collective survival rate stands at just 14%, meaning less than one in five people will still be alive five years after their diagnosis. This is totally unacceptable.
In comparison, the gap between the most survivable cancers and the least survivable cancers is an enormous 50%.
Doubling the survival rate of the less survivable cancers means 20,000 people would live for more than five years after their diagnosis.
This means an additional 10,000 lives could be saved every year in the UK.
Dad of two, Steve White, features in our video supporting this petition. Steve was diagnosed with an aggressive glioblastoma brain tumour in July 2016 aged just 43.
Steve was originally given 6-14 months prognosis. Three years later, aged just 45, he says: “I'm one of the lucky ones, I'm positive. Please don't write me off.”
Watch the video here
We are asking our supporters to sign the petition and share awareness of the Taskforce's ambition with the hashtag #DontWriteUsOff
There has been decades-long neglect and chronic under-funding which has led to a lack of public awareness, funding, treatments and research trials.
Successive governments have failed to prioritise these cancers leaving many patients feeling like they have effectively been written off.
The Less Survivable Cancers Taskforce is a pioneering coalition of charities each representing one of five least survivable cancers. We are The Brain Tumour Charity; Action Against Heartburn; British Liver Trust; Pancreatic Cancer UK; Guts UK and Roy Castle Lung Foundation.
The Taskforce aims to save lives by committing NHS England to accepting our new five-year survival target for the least survivable cancers.
Sign the petition here