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Cancer: Health Education

Volume 479: debated on Monday 1 September 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what funding his Department (a) is providing in 2008-09 and (b) plans to provide in 2009-10 on the social marketing campaign to raise awareness of the symptoms of breast, lung and bowel cancers, as referred to in paragraph 3.53 of his Department's Cancer Reform Strategy. (220936)

The Department has funded the Improvement Foundation to test local approaches to raising awareness of the symptoms of breast, lung and bowel cancers, and cardiovascular disease. Funding planned for 2008-09 is £1,132,000. There are no plans at this time for funding for 2009-10.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health in what cancer areas the National Awareness and Early Detection Initiative intends to develop standardised messages to underpin awareness-raising campaigns, as referred to in paragraph 3.51 of his Department's Cancer Reform Strategy, published on 3 December 2007; and what progress has been made in developing these messages. (220937)

Key messages have been developed for lung cancer and prostate cancer, and are being reviewed by stakeholders. Key messages for ovarian cancer are currently being developed.

In the immediate future, other areas to be considered are gynaecological cancers, lower gastro-intestinal cancers, skin cancer and head and neck cancers.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) when his Department plans to begin conducting regular national surveys of cancer symptom awareness, as referred to in paragraph 3.47 of his Department's Cancer Reform Strategy; (220938)

(2) what progress is being made in (a) developing measurement tools for cancer symptom awareness and (b) developing and testing new interventions to raise awareness of cancer as referred to in paragraph 3.44 of his Department's Cancer Reform Strategy.

The awareness measurement tool being developed by researchers funded by Cancer Research UK is expected to be ready to test in the autumn 2008, and will provide the basis for the first national survey of public awareness of cancer symptoms.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what form the Football Foundation's pilot programme to raise awareness of the signs and symptoms of cancer, as referred to in paragraph 3.55 of his Department's Cancer Reform Strategy, will take; when he expects the pilot programme to begin; and if he will make a statement. (220948)

Planning for this programme of work has begun and the specification is being drafted. The programme will run for approximately 12 months but we have not agreed start/finish dates at this time.

As detailed in paragraph 3.55 of the Cancer Reform Strategy an announcement will be made when this work begins.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health for which pilot projects the National Awareness and Early Diagnosis Initiative is supporting the evaluation, as referred to in paragraph 3.54 of his Department's Cancer Reform Strategy. (220949)

The Department is working with the National Cancer Research Institute and Cancer Research UK to develop an evaluation methodology.