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Professor Mike Richards

Volume 453: debated on Tuesday 28 November 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what Professor Mike Richards' role was in implementing information delivery of benefits to cancer patients; and if she will make a statement. (101312)

As National Cancer Director Professor Richards oversees the implementation of the national health service cancer plan, the Government’s strategy for improving cancer services in England. This includes providing appropriate information to cancer patients.

Providing cancer patients with information on benefits is an important issue and the Department has been working closely with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to explore options for publicising information about benefits. This includes signposting people with cancer to information about benefits through helplines and website addresses on information prescriptions. Information prescriptions for people with cancer will begin piloting in early 2007.

Additionally we have arranged for information to appear on the patient advisory liaison service (PALS) website with links to the DWP and Disability and Carers Service web pages to help provide PALS workers with information on benefits so as to better advise patients.