How can we improve lung cancer survival? New nationwide survey seeks views from UK health professionals

A new survey, launched today (18th May 2016) by the UK Lung Cancer Coalition (UKLCC), will aim to seek views from UK health professionals on how to improve five-year lung cancer survival rates over the next ten years.

“Despite the UKLCC being on track to meet its founding ambition of doubling five-year survival rates between 2005 and 2015*, lung cancer survival rates still compare poorly with other major cancers,” says Mr Richard Steyn, Chair of the UKLCC, and Consultant Thoracic Surgeon and Associate Medical Director, Surgery, Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust.

“We want to hear from healthcare professionals on how they believe we can further eliminate the barriers to poor survival and quality of life, right from the point of diagnosis.”  

The UK survey will be anonymous and open to all health professionals working across the lung cancer pathway.

Among the key questions included in the survey are:  What is the greatest challenge within your Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) in improving survival rates?  Should the UK introduce a national screening programme for lung cancer?  And to what extent do you believe regional inequalities in NHS services have an impact on lung cancer survival rates? 

“Although lung-cancer survival rates in Britain are improving, they remain unacceptably poor, compared with much of the rest of Europe and the United States.  It’s imperative that the UK clinical community continue to work together and continue to scrutinise commissioners and policy-makers,” says Professor Mick Peake, Professor of Respiratory Medicine, University of Leicester; clinical lead, National Cancer Analysis and Registration Service, Public Health England; and head of the UKLCC’s Clinical Advisory Group. 

The survey closing date is 27 June 2016 and the results of the research will culminate in a UK-wide report later this year. 

The survey can be accessed at:  Paper copies will also be available via the UKLCC’s Secretariat.


Note to editors

* Predicted five-year survival rate of patients diagnosed in England in 2013 is now almost double (16 per cent) what it was ten years ago (9 per cent).1

However, lung cancer remains the UK’s biggest cancer killer; it kills over 35,000 people each year, which is more than breast, bowel, bladder and uterine cancer combined.2 The disease accounts for nearly a quarter of all UK cancer deaths (22 per cent) and one in seven (13 per cent) of all new UK cancer cases.It is reported that four people die from lung cancer in the UK every hour (someone every 15 minutes).4 Despite, being labelled a ‘smoker’s disease’, one in eight people with lung cancer have never smoked.5

The UKLCC is the UK’s largest multi-interest group in lung cancer and was established to help bring lung cancer out of the political, clinical and media shadow and improve one-year and five-year survival rates – which has been achieved.  Its membership includes leading lung cancer experts, senior NHS professionals, charities and healthcare companies.  Its charity members are the British Lung Foundation, Tenovus Cancer Care, Cancer Research UK, Macmillan Cancer Support, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, and Cancer Black Care.

Please visit for more information and details of all the UKLCC partners.


  1. Walters S, Benitez-Majano S, Muller P, et al., ‘Is England closing the international gap in cancer survival?’ British Journal of Cancer, 4 August 2015.  Available online via: bjc2015265a.pdf
  2. Cancer Research UK, ‘Cancer mortality for common cancers’, 2012.  Available online via:
  3. Cancer Research UK, ‘Lung cancer statistics’, 2013.  Available online via:
  4. Cancer Research UK, ‘Lung cancer mortality statistics’, 2012.  Available online via:
  5. NHS Choices, ‘About lung cancer’, accessed May 2016.  Available online via:

Media Enquiries

For media enquiries, please contact:

Lynsey Conway, UKLCC Communications Consultant
07778 304233 or