Thousands of cancer patients are dying because of the lack of care in hospitals and medical centers, experts have warned.
Studies showed one in ten people who die of cancer have insufficient pain relief in their final days.
Charities have called the Office for National Statistics figures as “unacceptable”, and urged the Government to vow to improve the standard of palliative care.
Fear Of Pain
Macmillan Cancer Support, which wrote the analysis, cancer patients fear uncontrollable pain the most.
“There’s no excuse for so many people with cancer still not getting the support they need at the end of their livesLynda Thomas, Macmillan Cancer Support.” Macmillan Cancer support issued.
The organisation says 12,000 people who died of cancer in 2015 did not receive the proper and sufficient care in the final stage.
Many of these patients were not admitted to hospitals. However, they relied on community services, including visiting nurses to receive pain-relieving drugs.
The ONS statistics revealed patients were prone to die in pain at home rather than in hospital.
Macmillan said that of the people who had not felt the relief from pain when they had been treated at home; 72% of the patients also had poor pain relief.
Lynda Thomas, the charity’s chief executive, said: “There’s no excuse for so many people with cancer still not getting the support they need at the end of their lives.
“Absolutely no one should suffer unnecessary pain in their final days – with the right support this can be avoidable.”
“We need better-coordinated, round-the-clock community care to help prevent this anguish.”
Pledge To Help
Last year the Government pledged in the General Election manifesto to provide help and care to all patients no matter where they are.
“The Government must now make these promises a reality and end the variation in the quality of care people receive.” said Ms Thomas.
“Things cannot carry on the way they are.”
A Department of Health spokesperson said: “Cancer survival is at a record high and we are fully committed to improving cancer outcomes for everyone, including palliative care, which we know is not always good enough.”
“That’s exactly why our strategy for achieving world-class cancer outcomes includes a clear commitment to ensure earlier access to palliative support, which we expect NHS England to deliver for patients.”