UKLCC launch press release


Lung cancer survival rates can be doubled in the next ten years according to a powerful new coalition of leading UK lung cancer experts launched today (7th November).  The first and largest coalition of its kind, the UK Lung Cancer Coalition (UKLCC) believes thousands of lives can be saved as a result.1,2,3

“We know if we apply the best standards of care already being demonstrated in some parts of the country, and if we diagnose people early, we can double one year and five year lung cancer survival rates by 2015,” says Dr Mick Peake, chair of the UKLCC and NHS national clinical lead for lung cancer. “We estimate around 13,000 lives could be saved as a result.”

UKlung cancer survival is one of the worst in Europe4 with half of all people with lung cancer dying within six months.5 Currently, you are four times more likely to survive the disease in some parts of the country than others.6

Biggest killer

Lung cancer is the UK’s biggest cancer killer with someone dying of the disease every 15 minutes.7 More women die from lung cancer than breast cancer7 and one in eight cases of lung cancer are among people who have never smoked.8 According to recent research, half of all people in the UK know someone who has died or been affected by lung cancer.9

“Despite killing a quarter of all UK cancer patients, lung cancer only receives just three percent of the national cancer research budget,” says Professor Stephen Spiro, head of respiratory medicine at University College Hospital, London. “For some reason, lung cancer has not received the attention afforded to the other major cancers. Lung cancer can be cured if we just catch it early enough.”

As well as lobbying to improve services and increase funding, the UKLCC will be working with Government to get a sustained campaign of public awareness underway and improve patient information. The aim is to help people recognize symptoms and seek early diagnosis in order to save lives.


Note to editors:-

The UK Lung Cancer Coalition (UKLCC) is a powerful new coalition of the UK’s leading lung cancer experts, senior NHS and Department of Health professionals, charities and healthcare companies. Itis the UK’s largest multi-interest group in lung cancer.  This is the first time that all the major charities with an interest in lung cancer have come together. 

Chair and co-chairs of the UKLCC include:-

·         Dr Mick Peake (Chair) – Consultant Physician, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, NHS National Clinical Lead for Lung Cancer

·         Professor Stephen Spiro (Co-chair) – Head of the Dept of Respiratory Medicine, University College Hospital

·         Dr Jesme Baird (Co-chair) – Director of Patient Care, Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation

·         Dr Joe Maguire (Co-chair) – Consultant Clinical Oncologist, Liverpool Lung Cancer Unit

·         Dame Helena Shovelton (Co-chair) – Chief Executive, British Lung Foundation

Charity members include: Cancer Research UK, Macmillan Cancer Relief, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation, British Lung Foundation (Secretariat), CancerBACUP

For further information, case studies or images, please contact:- 

Lynsey Conway on 07778 304233,




2.    One- and five-year survival of patients diagnosed in 1991-95 and 1996-99: major cancers, sex and age, England and Wales. 2005. (Accessed at

3.    Coleman M, Rachet B, Woods L, et al.Trends in socioeconomic inequalities in cancer survival in England and Wales up to 2001. British Journal of Cancer 2004; 90.

4.    EUROCARE 3. Cancer survival in Europe: IARC, 2003 (Accessed 14 Suppl 5, at  and

5.    Cancer Research UK Statistics Dept



8.    UKfigures extrapolated from Mannino DM, Ford E, Giovono GA & Thun M. ‘Lung cancer deaths in the United States from 1979 to 1992: an analysis using multiple-cause mortality data. Int J Epidemiol 1998; 27: 159-166

9.    Bringing lung cancer out from the shadow research undertaken on behalf of United Kingdom Lung Cancer Coaliton by GfK NOP Telebus 30th September-2nd October 2005


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