Too few patients get end-of-life-care

Half of all patients diagnosed with cancer in the UK still die of the disease. The vast majority of research funding is directed towards developing new treatment options or towards strategies to improve early diagnosis – with less than 0.3 per cent of the £500m spent on cancer research allocated to palliative (end-of-life) care. Typically, patients who require end-of-life care still receive anticancer treatment. Through both routine care and participation in clinical trials, patients and their oncologists are united in the common goal of preserving life for as long as possible. But the repeated cycles of treatment and cumulative side effects can often have a detrimental impact upon the quality of a person’s life, with minimal benefits in terms of extending survival.

For more, see: Geriatrics and palliative medicine leadership is needed now more than ever: What are the training gaps? Pelleg AR et al.