Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly TD has announced additional new development funding of €20 million for cancer services in Budget 2022.
The continued development of cancer services in Ireland is guided by the National Cancer Strategy 2017-2026. Implementation of the National Cancer Strategy 2017-2026 is a Programme for Government commitment and is part of the Sláintecare programme.
Minister Donnelly said, “I secured funding of €20 million in 2021 to facilitate the ongoing implementation of the National Cancer Strategy. That funding, which was the largest annual investment in cancer services since the launch of the Strategy, facilitated a range of initiatives including increased diagnostic capacity, significant improvements in radiation oncology services and improved treatment pathways and supports for patients after their main period on treatment. There is palpable momentum from the improvements this year and I am delighted to build on this with the investment of a further €20 million in 2022.”
Professor Risteárd Ó Laoide, Director of the National Cancer Control Programme said, “I warmly welcome this investment in cancer care. The funding provided will support the delivery of direct patient services throughout the cancer pathway, from prevention and early detection, to diagnosis and treatment, leading to better outcomes for patients.”
Funding in 2022 will be used to:
• Provide additional clinics, extend clinic times, increase diagnostic capacity and provide locum/temporary supports.
• Enable Rapid Access Clinics for breast, lung and prostate cancers to improve waiting times for patients.
• Meet the growing need for medical oncology services and implement the new Systemic Anti-Cancer Therapy Model of Care.
• Meet the increasing and more complex demand for radiation oncology and cancer surgery.
• Develop more integrated psycho-social patient pathways to avoid repeat hospital visits by patients and to improve the quality of life of those living with and beyond cancer.
Minister Donnelly said, “the additional investment in cancer services in 2021 and 2022 is impacting directly on patients and will significantly advance the achievement of the vision of the National Cancer Strategy – to prevent cancer and work to improve the treatment, health and wellbeing, experiences and outcomes of those living with and beyond cancer.”