Crawley MP Henry Smith has been unanimously re-elected as Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Blood Cancer.
The APPG will continue its work to increase awareness of blood cancer and improve care and support for all those affected, following the meeting on Monday 3rd July which officially restarts the group following last month’s general election.
Launched last year, the Group began its first inquiry into blood cancer care in the NHS in March 2017. Following a call for evidence, the Group has received written submissions and will be holding oral evidence sessions in the coming months.
“I’m delighted to be joined by Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrat and Democratic Unionist Party colleagues from both the Commons and the Lords as we continue to stand up for blood cancer patients and identify ways where we can do better for patients and their support networks.
“This is an important issue and one which has affected my own family and others in Crawley, I remain grateful to those locally who have shared their own family experiences with me.”
Blood cancer is a complex and often misunderstood clinical area. Despite low awareness, blood cancer is actually the third biggest cancer killer, with 38,000 people diagnosed each year. There are a total of 230,000 people in the UK living with a blood cancer, which includes the many times of leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma as well as several other less common types.
The APPG inquiry will gain expert opinion from patients, clinicians, researchers and NHS staff to establish what is currently working well in blood cancer care, where there are gaps in services, and where policy makers and healthcare professionals need to target their efforts to improve the lives of patients.
Oral evidence sessions with clinical experts will be held after the summer parliamentary recess with the full report published before the end of the year.