Help us to stop bowel cancer

Improving treatment and care

Improving access to treatment and care for advanced bowel cancer

Nearly 4,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with advanced bowel cancer each year. This is when the cancer has spread to somewhere else in the body, such as the liver or lungs. People with advanced bowel cancer typically have poorer outcomes but access to surgery and drugs can help to extend life and can sometimes be curative.

What is the issue?

Unfortunately survival rates for advanced bowel cancer are poor. More than nine out of ten people diagnosed with stage 1 bowel cancer survive five years or more after diagnosis. However this drops significantly as the disease develops. Less than one in ten people with stage 4 cancer survive for five years or more.

Poor survival rates are linked to quality, availability and access to best treatment and care. Further research is needed to develop more effective drugs and surgical techniques for advanced bowel cancer that can extend people's lives as currently only limited options are available. 

What are we calling for?

We are determined to improve survival rates and support for people with advanced bowel cancer. We want to see improved access to high-quality treatment to ensure longer survival and a better quality of life for people, including:

  • Increasing survival rates and improving holistic support for patients and their families 

  • Reducing inequalities in access to potential life-saving liver surgery

  • Improving access to cancer drugs based on clinical need and not postcode

  • Providing better communications and support for people with palliative and end of life care needs

What are we doing?

We're determined to lead the change over the next few years to improve treatment and care for people with advanced bowel cancer. 

On Tuesday 27 September 2016, on World Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Day, along with four other international bowel cancer charities, we launched the global Get Personal Campaign.

We’ve joined forces with Bowel Cancer Australia, Colon Cancer Alliance (US), Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada, and Fondation A.R.CA.D. (France) to increase survival rates, improve quality of life and reduce variation in access to best treatment and care for people living with metastatic colorectal cancer around the world. By campaigning together and learning from each other, we can make a difference. 

Get Personal aims to: 

  • Eliminate variation between and within countries so that everyone, irrespective of where they live, has access to the best treatment and care.
  • Put metastatic colorectal cancer firmly on the agenda of governments, health care providers and key decision-makers.
  • Campaign for further research to address gaps in knowledge and support the development of new, innovative and effective treatments.
  • Raise awareness among patients, clinicians and policy-makers of the full range of tests and treatments to be made available.
Along with our international partners, we’ve carried out a survey to better understand the patient experience of being diagnosed and treated with advanced bowel cancer. The results of this will be published in early 2017.

How can you get involved?

  • Share your story. If you’ve had direct experience of advanced bowel cancer, either as a patient, partner, family member or carer then please get in touch.
  • Become a campaign supporter and help lead the change and improve early diagnosis of bowel cancer.
We are determined to save lives from bowel cancer but we can’t do this without you. Support vital research and lifesaving work to stop bowel cancer.
We are determined to save lives from bowel cancer but we can’t do this without you. Support vital research and lifesaving work to stop bowel cancer.