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Our Work in Parliament

Just 1% of national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours

Parliamentary questions

Parliamentary Questions (PQs) are questions formally put forward by Parliamentarians to members of the Government.

PQs are a very useful way  getting insight into what the Government’s policy is on a particular issue or what action has been taken.

As PQs must be answered, they also help us  to raise awareness of an issue and to keep pressing for change.

Questions can be asked either orally or in writing, and an answer is expected in around a week in the House of Commons and two weeks in the House of Lords, though there is no formal rule guaranteeing these timeframes.

PQs are a vital piece of the political  toolkit for Brain Tumour Research, our campaigners and our supporters at Westminster.

APPGBT March 2019

Written Question

Holly Mumby-Croft

Asked on: 21 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding has been provided by the Government for site-specific brain tumour research each year in (a) 2018, (b) 2019, (c) 2020, (d) 2021 and (e) 2022 to date.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 5 April 2022

The information is not held in the format requested.

The Department funds research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The following table shows the funding provided for site-specific brain tumour research in each financial year since 2018/19. This does not include the NHIR’s infrastructure spending.

2018/192019/202020/212021/22
£2.9 million£432,000£2.1 million£5.3 million

The decrease in funding in 2019/20 was due to the number of unsuccessful brain tumour applications. We rely on researchers to submit high-quality funding proposals within a difficult area with a small research community. The NIHR released an announcement to the research community in April 2018, making clear the desire to receive brain tumour research funding applications. Additionally, working closely with the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission, we have held customised workshops to support the research community in submitting more fundable research applications to the NIHR. All applications which were fundable in open competition have been funded. We will also provide funding for the research training elements of the Tessa Jowell Fellowships to train specialist brain tumour oncologists and therefore increase the research community.

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Written Question

Greg Smith

Asked on: 29 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what progress has been made on the establishment of dedicated neuro-oncology consultant posts within the fields of neurosurgery, neurology, neuropathology, paediatrics and medical and clinical oncology, as recommended by the Task and Finish Group on Brain Tumour Research.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 29 March 2022

NHS England and NHS Improvement have worked with the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission to designate centres of excellence in the management of brain tumours. Nine centres have achieved designation in its first phase. The Mission has a workstream on training to expand the brain tumour treatment workforce in collaboration between National Health Service bodies, Royal Colleges and charities.

All NHS services for brain tumours should be provided according to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence improving outcomes guidance which makes recommendations on workforce specialisations. NHS England and NHS Improvement expect the services commissioned to adhere to these guidelines.

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Written Question

Derek Thomas

Asked on: 28 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department has taken since 2018 to support the need for research and research funding into brain tumours identified by the Task and Finish Group on Brain Tumour Research 2018-2019; and what assessment his Department has made of how current funding levels for brain tumours compare to funding levels prior to 2018.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 28 March 2022

Since 2018, the Department has supported the establishment of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission (TJBCM), a national convening body for all stakeholders engaged in brain tumour research, treatment and care. This unites professional, patient, charity and Governmental groups to share information and establish programmes working towards a cure for brain tumours. We have held customised workshops to support the research community to submit fundable research applications to the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). We will also provide funding for the research training elements of the Tessa Jowell Fellowships to train specialist brain tumour oncologists and increase the research community.

The Department and the TJBCM are working to improve research and care for children and adults with brain cancer. This includes the launch of the Tessa Jowell BRAIN MATRIX, a new trials platform to provide access to trials of treatments best suited to individual tumours. Additionally, the Tessa Jowell Academy is a new free learning and networking platform, connecting 28 National Health Service brain tumour centres to share excellence in research, treatment and care.

The Department is liaising with the Medical Research Council on initiatives to stimulate the research pipeline for brain tumours. The NIHR is also engaging with UK Research and Innovation. The Department also works with funding partners such as Cancer Research UK, the Medical Research Council and brain tumour charities, for research into new scientific discoveries. No comparative assessment of funding levels for brain tumours prior to 2018 has been made.

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Written Question

Anum Qaisar

Asked on: 24 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to reply to the correspondence from the hon. Member for Airdrie and Shotts dated 10 December 2021, 20 December 2021, 11 January 2022, 8 February 2022 and 3 March 2022 on developing a four-nation approach to improving research and funding into childhood cancer.

Answered by: Edward Argar

Answered on: 24 March 2022

We replied to the hon. Member on 22 March 2022.

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Written Question

Holly Mumby-Croft

Asked on: 22 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding has been allocated by Government bodies and agencies to (a) site-specific brain tumour research, (b) site-specific breast cancer research, (c) site-specific prostate cancer research and (d) site-specific leukaemia research since 2002.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 22 March 2022

The Government funds research via many routes therefore there is not a single repository of funding. Government funders of health research do not allocate funding for specific disease areas. The level of research spend in a particular area is determined by factors including scientific potential and the number and scale of successful funding applications. The Department's National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) is a member of the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI), which is a strategic partnership of United Kingdom cancer research funders. The following table shows total site-specific research spending by the NCRI 's Government partners for the period 2002/03 to 2019/20, the most recent data available.

Brain tumour£24,848,028.73 
Breast cancer £148,744,495.51
Leukaemia£130,655,832.13
Prostate cancer£128,591,592.80

 

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Written Question

Catherine West

Asked on: 22 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to improve awareness of brain tumour symptoms during March 2022, Brain Tumour Awareness Month.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 22 March 2022

While there were no specific awareness campaigns for brain tumours, on 2 March 2022 the latest 'Help us help you' campaign launched to addresses the barriers which prevent people from consulting their general practitioner with possible cancer symptoms. NHS England and NHS Improvement are developing plans for future phases of the campaign to raise awareness of key cancer symptoms during 2022/23.

 

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Written Question

Ruth Cadbury

Asked on: 22 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many adults are participating in Government-funded clinical trials on treatments for (a) brain cancer, (b) leukaemia, (c) breast cancer and (d) prostate cancer

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 22 March 2022

The information is not held in the format requested. The Department funds research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR does not record the age of participants in clinical trial therefore the number of adults in these trials is not held. However, the following table shows all participants in clinical trials for treatments for brain, breast and prostate cancers either supported or funded by the NIHR since April 2019. Information on trials for leukaemia treatments is not available in the format requested. All studies are supported by the NIHR NIHR-funded studies.

Brain cancer7,801Brain cancer5,647
Breast cancer52,569Breast cancer16,681
Prostate cancer26,873Prostate cancer8,310

 

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Written Question

Daisy Cooper

Asked on: 18 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of allocating funding for the use of Optune, tumour treating fields therapy, in the NHS.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 22 March 2022

The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidelines are evidence-based recommendations for health and social care professionals in England. The guidelines are developed by experts based on a thorough assessment of the available evidence and extensive engagement with interested parties. They represent best practice and should be taken fully into account in the care and treatment of individual patients.

Optune has been considered by the NICE clinical guidelines programme. In its guideline on brain tumours (primary) and brain metastases in adults, the NICE recommended that tumour-treating fields should not be offered as part of management of a newly diagnosed grade IV glioma (glioblastoma) or as part of management of recurrent high-grade glioma.

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Oral Question

Holly Mumby-Croft

Asked on: 17 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what data his Department holds on how much is spent annually on cancer research in the UK (a) through NCRI partners and (b) by all those that conduct cancer research.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 17 March 2022

The following table shows annual spending on cancer research in the United Kingdom through National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) partners between 2017/18 and 2019/20. Data for 2020/21 is not yet available.

2017/18 £682 million

2018/19 £687 million

2019/20 £669 million

Data on research funded by all those that conduct cancer research is not held centrally. NCRI is a UK-wide partnership between research funders to maximise the value and benefits of cancer research for patients and the public. NCRI’s partners consist of over 20 organisations, including UK Research and Innovation; the Medical Research Council; Blood Cancer UK; Brain Tumour Research; Cancer Research UK; Breast Cancer Now; Cancer Research Wales; and the National Institute for Health Research. The full list of partners is available at the following link.

 

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Oral Question

Lord Randall of Uxbridge

Asked on: 15 March 2022

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to improve the outcomes for brain tumour cancer patients by establishing a targeted funding bespoke panel solely for brain tumour research

Answered by: Lord Kamall

Answered on: 15 March 2022

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) encourages the research community to submit high quality proposals. Applications are subject to peer review and judged in open competition, with awards being made on the basis of the importance of the topic to patients and health and care services, scientific quality and value for money. The NIHR ensures that relevant experts are involved in the assessment of the research applications it receives. Assessment committees comprise individuals with a broad range of expertise due to the wide diversity of topics it reviews, which may include brain tumour experts. However, committees ensure that before an individual application is assessed, detailed written peer review reports from experts chosen for their specific expertise are considered.

 

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Written Question

Derek Thomas

Asked on: 21 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the implications for its policies of the statement by the Task and Finish Group on Brain Tumour Research 2018-2019, that additional research is needed and the funders are ready to invest more in brain tumour research; and if he will make a statement.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 1 March 2022

The Department agrees that more research is needed on brain cancer and in 2018, we announced £40 million over five years for brain tumour research. The Department is working with research funders and other stakeholders through the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission to increase the capability and capacity of the brain tumour research community to enable researchers to develop fundable research proposals.

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Oral Question

Jeremy Hunt

Asked on: 1 March 2022

“Dear Mr Speaker. Today is brain tumour awareness month. The Secretary of State kindly wrote to me in January when my mother died from a brain tumour and Baroness Tessa Jowell was much loved on both sides of this house. She also of course died from a brain tumour. Given that it is the biggest cause of cancer death for the under-40s and we still don’t know what causes them, does he agree that this should be a priority for research so we understand as much about brain tumours as we do about other cancers.”

Answered by: Sajid Javid

Answered on: 1 March 2022

“Mr Speaker, can I once again express my condolences to my Right Honourable Friend for his loss. He’s absolutely right to raise this and the need for more research and that is one of the reasons why, back in 2018 we announced £40 million of extra research funding over the next five years. I can tell him some £9 million of that has already been committed to some ten projects, and in addition the Tessa Jowell Brain Matrix is an exciting new trials platform that will give people with brain cancer access to trials and treatments that are best suited for their individual tumours.”

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Written Question

Hilary Benn

Asked on: 21 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what proportion of established brain tumour centres are funded by (a) Governmental bodies and (b) the third sector. (126550) 

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 1 March 2022

NHS England and NHS Improvement are the direct commissioners of neurosurgery services, radiotherapy services and chemotherapy services, all of which are involved in the care of patients with brain tumours. There are 24 National Health Service commissioned and funded neurosciences centres which undertake surgery and NHS commissioned oncology centres which coordinate and deliver other aspects of care. Some follow-up care may be undertaken outside of these centres, within hospital oncology departments.

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Written Question

Jim Shannon

Asked on: 25 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to raise awareness across the UK of the five major symptoms of cancer.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 25 February 2022

NHS England and NHS Improvement 's 'Help us help you' campaign has raised awareness of key cancer symptoms. Three new awareness campaigns on cervical screening, prostate cancer and the barriers to patients seeking treatment for symptoms are running in the first quarter of 2022.

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Written Question

Catherine West

Asked on: 24 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of clinical nurse specialists who specialise in brain tumours ; and what steps the NHS is taking to ensure that all brain tumour patients have access to a named clinical nurse specialist.

Answered by: Edward Argar

Answered on: 21 February 2022

No specific estimate has been made as cancer nurse specialists are not separately identifiable in the National Health Service Electronic Staff Record. As part of a £52 million investment in the cancer and diagnostics workforce in 2021/22, Health Education England is offering 250 training grants to enable existing and aspiring cancer nurse specialists to undertake additional training to develop specialist clinical, leadership, education and research capabilities, including in relation to brain tumours.

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Written Question

Ruth Cadbury

Asked on: 24 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many children are participating in Government-funded clinical trials on treatment for (a) brain cancer and (b) leukaemia.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 24 February 2022

The Department funds clinical trials via the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). Since April 2019, 37 children consented to take part in trials for the treatment of brain cancer and 1,294 children consented to take part in trials regarding treatment for leukaemia. The NIHR also supports the delivery of trials funded by other research funders such as other public funders, charities, and industry. Of these trials, between 2019 to 2022 2,605 children consented to take part in trials for the treatment of brain cancer and 706 children consented to take part in trials for the treatment of leukaemia.

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Written Question

Greg Smith

Asked on: 24 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what progress his Department has made on taking forward the recommendation of the Task and Finish Group on Brain Tumour Research to improve access for researchers to brain tumour tissue and blood samples with accompanying clinical data; and what plans his Department has to tackle that issue.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 24 February 2022

The Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission reports that over 70% of United Kingdom neuro-oncology centres now have biobanking infrastructure in place to collect samples and tissue for research. These centres are collaborating to improve tissue collection opportunities through the Tessa Jowell Academy.

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Written Question

Alexander Stewart

Asked on: 24 February 2022

To ask the Scottish Government what estimate it has made of the number of clinical nurse specialists who specialise in brain tumours, and what steps NHS Scotland is taking to ensure that all brain tumour patients have access to a named clinical nurse specialist.

Waiting for answer

Written Question

Alexander Stewart

Asked on: 24 February 2022

To ask the Scottish Government what estimate it has made of the number of clinical nurse specialists who specialise in brain tumours, and what steps NHS Scotland is taking to ensure that all brain tumour patients have access to a named clinical nurse specialist.

Waiting for answer

Written Question

Catherine West

Asked on: 24 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of clinical nurse specialists who specialise in brain tumours ; and what steps the NHS is taking to ensure that all brain tumour patients have access to a named clinical nurse specialist.

Answered by: Edward Argar

Answered on: 24 February 2022

No specific estimate has been made as cancer nurse specialists are not separately identifiable in the National Health Service Electronic Staff Record. As part of a £52 million investment in the cancer and diagnostics workforce in 2021/22, Health Education England is offering 250 training grants to enable existing and aspiring cancer nurse specialists to undertake additional training to develop specialist clinical, leadership, education and research capabilities, including in relation to brain tumours.

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Written Question

Beatrice Wishart

Asked on: 24 February 2022

To ask the Scottish Government how the site-specific brain tumour research funding that is provided through the Chief Scientist Office is allocated between the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Common Scientific Outline categories of (a) biology, (b) aetiology, (c) prevention, (d) early detection, diagnosis and prognosis, (e) treatment and (f) cancer control, survivorship and outcomes research.

Waiting for answer

Written Question

Derek Thomas

Asked on: 22 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department has taken since 2018 to support the need for research and research funding into brain tumours identified by the Task and Finish Group on Brain Tumour Research 2018-2019; and what assessment his Department has made of how current funding levels for brain tumours compare to funding levels prior to 2018. (127506)

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 28 March

Since 2018, the Department has supported the establishment of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission (TJBCM), a national convening body for all stakeholders engaged in brain tumour research, treatment and care. This unites professional, patient, charity and Governmental groups to share information and establish programmes working towards a cure for brain tumours. We have held customised workshops to support the research community to submit fundable research applications to the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). We will also provide funding for the research training elements of the Tessa Jowell Fellowships to train specialist brain tumour oncologists and increase the research community.

The Department and the TJBCM are working to improve research and care for children and adults with brain cancer. This includes the launch of the Tessa Jowell BRAIN MATRIX, a new trials platform to provide access to trials of treatments best suited to individual tumours. Additionally, the Tessa Jowell Academy is a new free learning and networking platform, connecting 28 National Health Service brain tumour centres to share excellence in research, treatment and care.

The Department is liaising with the Medical Research Council on initiatives to stimulate the research pipeline for brain tumours. The NIHR is also engaging with UK Research and Innovation. The Department also works with funding partners such as Cancer Research UK, the Medical Research Council and brain tumour charities, for research into new scientific discoveries. No comparative assessment of funding levels for brain tumours prior to 2018 has been made.

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Written Question

Pam Cameron

Asked on: 22 February 2022

o ask the Scottish Government how the site-specific brain tumour research funding that is provided through the Chief Scientist Office is allocated between the National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI) Common Scientific Outline categories of (a) biology, (b) aetiology, (c) prevention, (d) early detection, diagnosis and prognosis, (e) treatment and (f) cancer control, survivorship and outcomes research.

Waiting for answer

Written Question

Virendra Sharma

Asked on: 21 February 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to obtain additional resources to build capacity so that the NHS can tackle the cancer backlog.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 21 February 2022

At the Spending Review we announced an extra £5.9 billion of capital to support elective recovery, diagnostics, and technology over the next three years. This includes £2.3 billion to increase the volume of diagnostic activity and to roll out Community Diagnostic Centres to help clear backlogs of people waiting for clinical tests, such as magnetic resonance imaging, ultrasounds and computerised tomography scans. We announced a £1 billion Elective Recovery Fund at Spending Review 2020 to support elective and cancer recovery. As part of this, a £20 million investment was made available to Cancer Alliances to help speed up cancer diagnosis and help manage the high volume of referrals. The Spending Review in 2020 provided £260 million to increase the National Health Service workforce and support commitments made in the NHS Long Term Plan. This included £52 million in 2021/22 for Health Education England to further invest in the cancer and diagnostics workforce, including expanding training in key medical professions, offering training grants for 250 nurses wishing to become cancer clinical nurse specialists and for an additional 100 nurses wishing to become chemotherapy nurses.

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Written Question

Tony Lloyd

Asked on: 6 December 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what funding the Government is making available for the treatment of brain tumours. 

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 17 January 2022

The information is not available in the format requested. Expenditure on the treatment of brain tumours forms part of system budgets for the National Health Service. Funding is made available to Cancer Alliances to deliver the NHS Long Term Plan's ambitions for all cancers, including brain tumours.

 

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Written Question

Tony Lloyd

Asked on: 13 December 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what funding is available for research into brain tumours; and what research streams on brain tumours the Government is allocating funding to.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 13 December 2021

In May 2018 the Government announced a £40 million investment over five years for brain tumour research as part of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission, through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR released a public announcement to the research community, making clear our desire to receive brain tumour research funding applications. We are relying on researchers to submit high-quality research proposals.

As with other Government funders of health research, the NIHR does not allocate funding for specific disease areas. The level of research spend in a particular area is driven by factors such as scientific potential and the number and scale of successful funding applications. The NIHR welcomes funding applications for research into any aspect of human health, including brain tumour research.

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Written Question

Drew Hendry

Asked on: 6 December 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much of the £20 million committed by his Department in 2018 to brain tumour research over a five year period is still to be allocated; and what assessment he has made of the effect of the covid-19 outbreak on brain tumour research funding.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 17 December 2021

Since this funding was announced in February 2018, a further £20 million was announced in May 2018, bringing the total planned investment to £40 million over five years.

The information on spending still to be allocated is not held in the format requested. The National Institute for Health Research’s (NIHR) infrastructure spending on cancer research does not record the specific type of cancer. Studies can be applicable to cancer in general, such as the type of tumour and research on supportive and palliative care interventions.

During the COVID-19 pandemic many of the NIHR’s research programmes, studies and trials were necessarily paused. However, the NIHR’s funding competitions remained open throughout, including for brain tumour research.

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Written Question

Nadia Whittome

Asked on: 1 November 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made for the implications of his policies of the findings of the Level Up and Stop the Devastation Report from Brain Tumour Research on creating a dedicated levelling up brain tumour research fund.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 1 November 2021

The Department agrees further brain tumour research is vital for improving the treatment and outcome for these patients. In 2018, we announced £40 million over five years for the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission via the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). To encourage applications for this research, the NIHR is supporting the research community in submitting fundable proposals. The NIHR also continues to encourage brain tumour research applications. We therefore have no plans for a dedicated fund.

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Written Question

Nadia Whittome

Asked on: 27 October 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to improve outcomes for brain tumour patients.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 27 October 2021

In May 2018 we announced £40 million over five years for brain tumour research to improve outcomes for cancer patients as part of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission through the National Institute for Health Research . Since this announcement, 10 applications for research have been funded and seven are under consideration. The NHS Long Term Plan set out a series of commitments that focus primarily on fast and early diagnosis for all cancers including raising greater awareness of symptoms of cancer, lowering the threshold for referral by general practitioners and accelerating access to diagnosis investing in rapid diagnostic centres. These measures, aimed at improving cancer outcomes for all cancers, will benefit brain tumour patients.

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Written Question

Caroline Dinenage

Asked on: 27 October 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much and what proportion of his Department’s cancer research budget was spent on childhood cancer research in the last three years; and if he breakdown those figures by types of childhood cancer that received that funding.

Answered by: Edward Argar

Answered on: 27 October 2021

This information is not held in the format requested. The Department funds research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR does not categorise research studies by age group or by type of childhood cancer. In addition, not all studies research a specific condition but are aimed at prevention or to improve outcomes for multiple conditions.

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Written Question

Henry Smith

Asked on: 27 October 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the suitability of the new NHS England Quality of Life survey for people diagnosed with a less survivable cancer.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield

Answered on: 27 October 2021

All people with a cancer diagnosis, including those with a less survivable cancer, are invited to complete the Cancer Quality of Life Survey. This is an initiative aimed specifically at supporting long term survivorship. For cancer patients who sadly do not survive for 18 months from diagnosis other approaches to assessing their experience, such as the Cancer Patient Experience Survey, will be more appropriate

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Written Question

Gregory Campbell

Asked on: 26 October 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what progress has been made to encourage more high quality applications for funding into brain tumour research.

Answered by: Edward Argar

Answered on: 26 October 2021

In May 2018 the Government announced £40 million over five years for brain tumour research as part of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). We are relying on researchers to submit high-quality fundable research applications in a difficult area with a small research community. We have released a public announcement making clear our desire to receive funding applications. Working with the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission, we held customised workshops in October 2021 to support the research community in submitting more fundable research applications and we are funding training in research for specialist brain tumour oncologists. The NIHR has received 69 applications to date, of which 10 have already been successful with others still under consideration

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Written Question

Nadia Whittome

Asked on: 15 October 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made for the implications of his policies of the findings of the Level Up and Stop the Devastation Report from Brain Tumour Research on creating a dedicated levelling up brain tumour research fund.

Written Question

Nadia Whittome

Asked on: 15 October 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to improve outcomes for brain tumour patients.

Oral Question

Lord Hunt 

Asked on: 29 September 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to publish a strategy for the (1) prevention, and (2) treatment, of brain tumours in children and young adults, and (3) aftercare for such people.

Answered by: Lord Kamall

Answered on: 29 September 2021

NHS England has no plans to do so.Services for the treatment of brain tumours in children and young adults falls under NHS England 's direct commissioning responsibilities for specialised services . The NHS Long Term Plan includes a number of commitments for improving the outcomes and experience of children, teenagers and young adults with cancer including: implementing networked care; simplifying pathways and transitions between service; ensuring that every patient has access to specialist care and increasing participation in clinical research.

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Written Question

Lord Hunt

Asked on: 15 September 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have (1) to produce a strategy for the transition to adult care of children with autism who have brain tumours, and (2) to review the age classification for when people with autism are considered to be young...

Oral Question

Anum Qaisar-Javed

Asked on: 15 September 2021

September marks Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Every day across the UK, 12 children and young people will be diagnosed with cancer, and, of those, two will not survive. My constituent Nadia Majid and her family are campaigning to improve research and funding in this field. Nadia’s son, Rayhan, was only four years old when he was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour. Rayhan tragically passed away only four months after his diagnosis. Will the Prime Minister join me in thanking all the doctors, nurses and support staff who work tirelessly to fight against childhood cancer and meet with me to discuss how the four nations can work together to improve research and funding into childhood cancers and to support families like Nadia’s?

Answered by: Boris Johnson, Prime Minister

Answered on: 15 September 2021

I know that the hon. Lady echoes the thoughts of millions of people. There is not a family in this country that has not been touched by cancer. Childhood cancer is particularly tragic, which is why the Government are investing huge sums in research and also in supporting some of the fantastic charities that she mentions, particularly those investigating brain cancers.

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Written Question

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath

Asked on: 13 September 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to publish a strategy for the (1) prevention, and (2) treatment, of brain tumours in children and young adults, and (3) aftercare for such people.

Oral Question

Thangam Debbonaire 

Asked on: 8 September 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of the use of personalised vaccines as a treatment for brain tumours.

Answered by: Maria Caulfield, MP

Answered on: 21 September 2021

At present, no vaccine therapies are licensed for use as a treatment for brain cancer. Such treatments are used within either experimental or early stage trial settings, therefore they are not routinely available to patients.

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Written Question

Emily Thornberry

Asked on: 6 September 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with his Cabinet colleagues on improving the availability of and access to clinical trials in the UK for families affected by brain and childhood cancers.

Answered by Jo Churchill MP

Answered on: 6 September 2021

The Secretary of State has not had any specific conversations with Cabinet colleagues on improving the availability of and access to clinical trials in the United Kingdom for families affected by brain and childhood cancers. We are determined to make it as easy as possible for the public to identify the availability of, and access to, research happening across the country, including brain and childhood cancers, and enable them to take part. We have launched the “Be Part of Research” study search application and website, which helps people to find out about health research, including clinical trials, of interest to them.

We are also working with the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission to increase high quality brain tumour research.

 

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Written Question

Emily Thornberry

Asked on: 6 September 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to build on the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement in promoting future collaborations between UK-based and EU-based medical researchers, including for research into brain tumours and childhood cancers.

Answered by Edward Argar MP

Answered on: 6 September 2021

As part of the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement, the United Kingdom (UK) has agreed to associate with Horizon Europe, furthering the UK’s ambition to become a global science superpower. Our participation will support continued partnerships between UK and European Union’s (EU) science and research experts and provide a platform through which our scientists and innovators can tackle significant and shared challenges. This includes medical research into cancers given that research and innovation on cancer, including childhood cancers, remains a high priority for the EU. The UK has an excellent track record in EU Framework Programmes and we are actively encouraging UK researchers and innovators to form consortia with their UK and EU partners and are encouraging UK researchers and companies to take advantage of this opportunity

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Question

David Simmonds

Asked on: 4 March 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department has taken to (a) promote collaborative working between (i) the National Institute for Health Research, (ii) UK Research and Innovation, (iii) Cancer Research UK, (iv) the Medical Research Council, the (v) Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission and (vi) other relevant brain tumour research stakeholders and (b) award funding to advance the research being undertaken on brain tumours and brain tumour treatment.

Answered by Edward Argar MP

Answered on: 15 March 2021

The Department supported the establishment of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission (TJBCM) in 2018. The TJBCM is a national convening body for all stakeholders engaged in brain tumour research, treatment and care. Its mission is to unite professional, patient, charity and Government groups to share information, and establish transformative programmes that will lead ultimately to a cure for brain tumours.

Active contributors to the TJBCM include the Department’s National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), the Medical Research Council, Cancer Research UK, Brain Tumour Research, the Brain Tumour Charity and Brainstrust as well as representatives of the National Health Service. As part of the establishment of the TJBCM the Department announced £40 million over five years for brain tumour research via the NIHR. The NIHR is also engaging with UK Research and Innovation colleagues.

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Written Question

Hilary Benn MP

Asked on: 3 March 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the merits of repeated DWP assessments where an individual applicant has had a (a) brain tumour or (b) severe head injury when there is no evidence that the person’s condition will improve.

Answered by Colleen Fletcher MP

Answered on: 8 March 2021

In both Work Capability Assessments (WCA) and Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessments, healthcare professionals advise on a review period that is appropriate to the individual claimant. In the WCA, if a claimant has a condition that causes severe functional impairment and there is no realistic prospect of recovery of function they can be placed in the severe conditions group and would not be routinely reassessed. In PIP, claimants receiving the highest level of benefit whose functional ability will not improve will receive an ongoing award with a light touch review at the 10-year point. The up-coming Health and Disability Green Paper will focus on how we can make further improvements to assessments and seek views on future changes

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Question

Hilary Benn

Asked on: 10th February 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the latest research findings from research funded by his Department into glioma cancer have shown; and if he will make a statement.

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