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Last Updated: Monday, 1 October 2007, 14:03 GMT 15:03 UK
Tories 'party of NHS' - Lansley
Andrew Lansley
Mr Lansley says UK cancer survival rates are 'a disgrace'.
The UK would be among the first countries in Europe to introduce effective new cancer treatments, under plans unveiled by the Conservatives.

Shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley says he wants to boost cancer survival rates by up to 100 lives a day.

Hailing the Tories as the party of the NHS, he said it was "a disgrace" that UK survival rates were so low.

He added that his party would introduce a "search and destroy strategy" to combat hospital infections.

In a speech to the Conservatives' conference in Blackpool, Mr Lansley stressed that the UK needed a new cancer strategy for promoting prevention, awareness of symptoms, early diagnosis and rapid treatment.

Stroke patient services

"It is a scandal that we are the leading European centre for cancer research - funded not least by donations from the British public - and yet Britain is amongst the lowest and slowest in Europe in the take-up of new cancer treatments," he said.

Under a Conservative government, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence would appraise new cancer drugs when they are licensed to enable the UK to be among the first countries in Europe to introduce effective new treatments, he said.

I believe we can now say with confidence that the Conservative Party is the party of the NHS
Andrew Lansley

Mr Lansley also announced plans to improve care for stroke patients, with an increased emphasis on services such as physiotherapy.

"We will reform stroke services, we will save lives and we will reduce disabilities from stroke," he said.

The NHS was his "number one priority", he said, adding that it could not be run by a "demoralised and devalued" staff.

"It's time for all that to change. Labour has lost the trust and support of NHS staff," he said.

"I believe we can now say with confidence that the Conservative Party is the party of the NHS."


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