Henry Smith supports global manufacturer of innovative cancer technologies in Crawley
Press release: Henry Smith MP visited Varian Medical Systems today, Friday 13th March 2020, to see the world-leading cancer care technologies manufactured in Crawley. As a supporter of the Radiotherapy4Life campaign, Action Radiotherapy and an active member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Radiotherapy (APPG RT), Henry met with representatives and local constituents who contribute to these innovative cancer care technologies.
“I was proud to visit Varian Medical Systems who have been creating jobs and opportunities in Crawley for over 35 years. Having access to the most advanced radiotherapy treatments is vital for fighting cancer and a staggering 1 in 4 of us will need it at some point in our lives.”
“On my visit I was delighted to see the work of local manufacturers in Crawley contributing to innovative technologies driving new wins in cancer care. As a member of the APPG for Radiotherapy, I know the life-saving impacts of radiotherapy and was grateful for the chance to see these innovations being produced first hand”.
Adele Lyons, Head Sales and Service UK and Ireland for Varian Medical Systems, said:
“We are very pleased to welcome Henry Smith, Crawley MP, to our UK and Ireland headquarters. We are particularly excited to share with him the manufacture of our latest technology platform, Halcyon. At Varian, we are committed to supporting the UK economy for more than 35 years, as well as the APPG RT, to enable the right access to radiotherapy for all patients who need it, by focusing on innovation through a strong investment in R&D.”
With 250 employees in the UK and Ireland and 10,000 worldwide, Varian Medical Systems hold a shared vision of a world without fear of cancer. Providing important tools for fighting cancer used across private, NHS, and veterinary sectors, Varian has the stated aim of providing simpler, more efficient, and more effective technologies to power new victories in cancer care.
Varian provides comprehensive solutions for radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy, as well as software systems for planning treatments, managing cancer clinics, sharing knowledge, coordinating care, and using data to deliver evidence-based medicine. With an Intelligent Cancer Care approach, the company is harnessing advanced technologies like artificial intelligence, machine learning and data analytics to enhance cancer treatment and expand access to care.
Radiotherapy4life world cancer day event 4th february 2020
Yesterday, the Radiotherapy4Life campaign, in association with Action Radiotherapy and the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Radiotherapy (APPGRT), hosted an event for MPs and Peers in the House of Commons for World Cancer Day to raise awareness about the need for improved radiotherapy provision in the NHS. We were supported by the UK Radiotherapy Board (SOR, IPEM and RCR) as well as industry and individual professionals. We had a great turn out of MPs interested to hear about radiotherapy. We discussed our recent report, covered this week by the Daily Express, showing that 3.5 million people in England live further than the 45 minute recommended travel time to their nearest radiotherapy centre. Investment in infrastructure, workforce and IT is desperately needed - half of NHS Trusts have machines that need replacing and advanced treatments are being restricted. Following this, a signed letter was delivered to No 10 Downing Street. The next step is for MPs to visit their local radiotherapy department and learn what a fantastic job the professionals do. To see more, please visit the Radiotherapy4Life website or the Twitter page, and follow the hashtag #Radiotherapy4Life
petition and government response
On the 26th of November 2018 Action Radiotherapy lodged a petition on the Governments petition website.
The petition was titled "We want a world class radiotherapy service accessible for all cancer patients"
Action Radiotherapy want the best radiotherapy treatment for cancer as close to home as possible. 1 in 2 of us will at some point develop cancer, meaning 1 in 4 of us need radiotherapy at some point in our lifetime. More investment is critical; despite the need, radiotherapy only receives 5% of the UK cancer budget.
The petition asked for an increase the NHS Cancer budget dedicated to radiotherapy from 5% to 6.5%, and a one-off £250 million investment to modernise existing machines and build satellite radiotherapy centres to ensure accessible service nationwide. UK cancer survival rates are well below European average.
If the UK achieved best European levels, 10k more patients would survive per year. Radiotherapy has a huge part to play in giving the people of the UK the cancer treatment service they deserve.
The petition achieved 10,610 signatures within the 3 month window prompting a response from The Government.
The response from The Government can be read HERE
Launch of APPGRT
On the 22nd of May 2018, in Westminster Tim Farron MP launched the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) on Radiotherapy with cross party support with an aim to develop a new patient manifesto for radiotherapy treatment in the UK. Action Radiotherapy was confirmed as the secretariat. With adequate resources we have the capability of providing a world leading high quality cost effective nationally consistent innovative radiotherapy service.
More than £3,000 raised for Action Radiotherapy
A big thank you to everyone who supported our team of 25 runners in the recent Virgin British 10K race. We are delighted to announce the total amount raised was £3,271.50. Runners from Action Radiotherapy, Brainlab (who raised £1,000) and Team Vision RT (who raised £1,241) took part in the ultimate tour of London’s finest sights. To the cheering crowds and all the people who donated: we couldn’t have done it without you! You can still donate HERE.
Action Radiotherapy believes that every cancer patient in the UK should have access to the best radiotherapy treatment available. Your donations go directly towards our work.
Parliamentary Reception: Radiotherapy
On Tuesday, November 14, Tim Farron MP in partnership with AdvaMed, the United States Trade Association for Advanced Medical Technologies, held a briefing to shine a light on radiotherapy and the benefits that it can bring to patients and in improving cancer outcomes. The event took place in the Strangers’ Dining Room, House of Commons, and featured Steve Brine, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health, the lead Minister for cancer services.
In addition to Mr. Brine, the event brought together stakeholders from the local and national NHS, patient and professional groups, MPs and Peers to consider the benefits of radiotherapy and next steps across the UK. Participants recognised the welcome progress made to improve the provision of radiotherapy in the UK, raised awareness of the benefits of radiotherapy and considered how we can ensure equal access for all patients to the latest techniques.
Action Radiotherapy worked with Map Medtech in highlighting the parliamentary event to patients and professionals in the UK. Map Medtech confirmed that in large part to us, we have been successful in generating a large interest by both patients and professionals, enabling the event to be fully registered.
Action Radiotherapy was well represented at the event with attendance by Professor Pat Price, Chairman, Judith Potts, Trustee, Dr Christy Goldsmith, Trustee and Peter Zarko-Flynn, Trustee. We were also pleased to attain a new friend of Action Radiotherapy at the event, Rachel Bland, who presented her patient experience at the event with a round of applause from the audience.
Action Radiotherapy Champions Network launched on World Cancer Day
In January 2018, the Action Radiotherapy Champions Network was established to help the radiotherapy community share success stories, tackle issues and raise awareness of best practice in radiotherapy. This will be achieved through the formation of a group of radiotherapy professionals, including physicists, each representing NHS and Private Sector radiotherapy units in the UK, and led by a steering group of radiotherapy professionals who actively formed the network.
The ARCNet steering group have worked hard to prepare the launch of the network on World Cancer Day, February 4th 2018. The four steering group members are; Catherine Mercer, Pre-Treatment Radiographer at Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust, and Partnership Liaison at ICON Group; Neil Livingstone, Head of Radiotherapy at The London Clinic; Lynsey Rice, Research and Development Lead at The Harley St Clinic; and Claire Reynolds, Pre-Treatment Superintendent at The Christie NHS Foundation Trust. You can read more about the ARCNet steering group members here.
Last week, ARCNet sent introduction letters to heads of departments across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and included all NHS Trusts and Private radiotherapy units. In that letter, we invited the head of department to become part of our initiative by asking their support in identifying a representative in their team to join us in developing a large radiotherapy network to support professionals and patients. So far the response has been excellent and we look forward to hearing back from those who have not yet come forward to support us.
If you have an interest in becoming a ARCNet representative, please speak to your radiotherapy manager or contact Action Radiotherapy by email:
ARCNet would like to take this opportunity to welcome you all to our network. We believe that with your support, we can achieve even more for radiotherapy professionals and for radiotherapy patients in the UK. We welcome any suggestions you may have in building the network, and you can follow us on twitter by searching #ARC_Net and @accornUK.