Liverpool 'has highest lung cancer death rate'

Liverpool Primary Care Trust has the highest mortality rate for lung cancer in the country, a new report claims.

Both Manchester and Liverpool PCTs also have the highest incidences of the disease, the research by the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, shows.

It claims chances of survival are a "postcode lottery" with patients in Herefordshire three times more likely to survive than those in Liverpool.

The report will be launched at the House of Commons later.

The research, Explaining Variations in Lung Cancer in England, also found significant differences in how lung cancer patients are treated in different parts of the country.

Patient survival

Dr Rosemary Gillespie, chief executive of The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, said: "Your chance of surviving lung cancer and receiving a treatment which could benefit you should not be decided by where you live in the country.

"Sadly, it is clear that this is indeed the case and there is significant geographical variation in patient survival and patient access to care and treatment."

The report found chances of seeing specialist nurses and the availability of different treatment such as surgery or chemotherapy or hospital admission times all varied depending on where a patient lives.

Dr Gillespie said it was hoped the report will help improve the standards and increase survival rates across the country.

Lung cancer is still the most common cause of cancer death in England.

One of the biggest problems was many people were diagnosed too late, it found.

Only 30% of lung cancer patients survived more than a year past diagnoses compared to 96% of those with breast cancer.

It claimed could be in part due to a long road to diagnoses with a third of patients reporting they saw their GP three times or more before eventually being diagnosed.

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