Yesterday Tuesday I travelled to the House of Commons for a very interesting Launch of British Lung foundations New Campaign.
Why it’s time for parliament to prioritise lung health
Penny talks about the importance of speaking out for better lung health in the UK.
Over recent years, we have seen great improvements in public health. The introduction of a ban on smoking in public places will long be remembered as a pivotal moment in our nation’s health.
In the last parliament, I was proud of the British Lung Foundation for leading the successful ban on smoking in cars carrying children across England and Wales, and strongly supporting the introduction of standardised packaging of tobacco. These measures will protect generations of young people from the dangers of big tobacco companies.
While we celebrate these achievements and their impact, we must not be complacent. There’s still more work to be done to protect and improve the nation’s lungs.
We’ve come far, but not far enough
In the UK, 1 out of 5 people is affected by lung disease. Someone dies from a lung condition every 5 minutes. Every year, nearly 550,000 people find out they have lung disease.
Alongside cancer and cardiovascular disease, lung disease is one of the UK’s three big causes of death, yet over the years it has received a fraction of the others’ funding and attention.
Support and services for many lung conditions fall short and many patients feel lost in the system. This is simply not acceptable. It’s time to tackle lung disease with the same aggression that it shows to those it affects.
Time to act
I will continue, as I always have, to speak out against health inequalities and ensure all those who are living with a long-term condition receive the care and support they deserve.
That’s why the British Lung Foundation is hosting a parliamentary reception to inform MPs about the extent of lung disease in the UK.
We will be giving data to MPs to show them how their regions are affected by lung conditions and to tell them what they as politicians can do to help the people they represent.
The more politicians know about the scale and impact of lung disease, the harder it will be to ignore.
By working together, we will improve diagnosis and treatments, and find cures for lung disease.
These statistics on mesothelioma in the UK were compiled as part of our Respiratory Health of the Nation project by teams at St George’s, University of London, Nottingham University and Imperial College London.
How many people in the UK have been diagnosed with mesothelioma?
In 2012, 5,420 people had ever received a diagnosis of mesothelioma, as estimated from general practitioner records. This had increased from an estimated 5,040 in 2004. These figures include patients currently living with mesothelioma, and those whose cancer was successfully treated in the past.
How many people died from mesothelioma in the UK in 2012?
In 2012, 2,431 people died from mesothelioma (0.4 per cent of all deaths and 2.1 per cent of deaths from lung disease), up from 2,160 in 2004.
How many males and females have mesothelioma in the UK?
In 2004–13, almost four times as many men as women had mesothelioma.
In 2013, 14 males and four females for every 100,000 had the condition.
How old are the people with mesothelioma in the UK?
Very few people under 50, and no people under 30, have mesothelioma.
Diagnoses of mesothelioma increase as people get older, with a marked increase in numbers among those over 60.
How many people were registered as new cases of mesothelioma in the UK in 2011?
Cancer registration is the collection of population-based data on every new diagnosis of cancer (and mortality and survival from cancer) by a network of cancer registries across the UK. Data is collected on all patients whether they are treated in hospitals (acute, long stay, hospice or private) or by GPs. The Office for National Statistics collates the data to provide national figures annually.
According to the latest available cancer registration statistics, during 2011 there were 2,570 new cases of mesothelioma in the UK, an incidence rate of 2.8 per 100,000 persons. This is similar to the rate of new diagnoses estimated from GP statistics for recent years. However, GP statistics may underestimate the true incidence of cancer, because the diagnosis may be made in hospital during terminal illness, or post-mortem.
During 2011, 2,172 men and 398 women were registered as new cases of mesothelioma in the UK. These correspond to incidence rates of 5.2 per 100,000 for males and 0.8 per 100,000 for females.
How did rates of registration for mesothelioma vary across the UK in 2011?
England: There were higher rates of registration in the North East and South West compared with the UK generally. In Yorkshire and Humberside and the North East of England, male registration rates were higher than the rate for females. In other regions, notably the East Midlands, East of England, London and the South West of England, female registration rates were higher than the rates for males.
Scotland: There were lower rates of registration in Scotland compared with the UK generally, with a considerably higher registration rate for males compared with the rate for females.
Wales: The registration rate was lower compared with the UK generally, with the rate higher for females.
Northern Ireland: There were similar registration rates compared with the UK generally, with the rate for males lower.
How many people died from mesothelioma in each UK region in 2008–12?
England: There was a higher mortality rate from mesothelioma in the North East of England than in the UK generally, and lower death rates than the UK average in the East Midlands and West Midlands.
Scotland: The death rate was lower than in the UK generally.
Wales: The death rate was lower than in the UK generally.
Northern Ireland: The death rate was lower than in the UK generally.
Please go to this link and have a look at all the graphs.