Cancer Waiting Times Annual Report, 2017-18

The latest annual statistics on waiting times for suspected and diagnosed cancer patients accessing NHS services were released on 14th June 2018 by NHS England according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority.

Cancer Waiting Times Annual Report 2017-18 – PDF 722KB 

The key points from the 2017-18 annual report are:

All cancer two week wait

  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients who were seen by a specialist within 14 days of being urgently referred for suspected cancer by their GP was 94.1%.

Two week wait for symptomatic breast patients (cancer not initially suspected)

  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients who were seen by a specialist within 14 days of being urgently referred by their GP with exhibited breast symptoms (where cancer was not initially suspected) was 92.8%.
  • By quarter, performance was below the operational standard of 93% for the first and the fourth quarter of 2017-18 but above this standard in the second and third quarter of 2017-18.

31-day (diagnosis to first treatment) wait for all cancers

  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients receiving a first definitive treatment for cancer who began that treatment within 31 days was 97.5%.

62-day (urgent GP referral to first treatment) wait: all cancers

  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients who received a first treatment for cancer within 62 days following an urgent GP referral for suspected cancer was 82.3%.
  • By quarter, performance was below the operational standard of 85% for all quarters in 2017-18.

62-day wait for first treatment following referral from an NHS cancer screening service: all cancers

  • In 2016-17, the percentage of patients who received a first treatment for cancer within 62 days following referral from a NHS cancer screening service was 90.9%.

62-day wait for first treatment from consultant upgrade

  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients who received a first treatment for cancer within 62 days following a consultant decision to upgrade their priority was 87.9%.

31-day wait for second or subsequent treatment

  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients receiving subsequent treatment for cancer where the treatment modality was an anti-cancer drug regimen began that treatment within 31 days was 99.4%.
  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients receiving subsequent treatment for cancer where the treatment modality was surgery began that treatment within 31 days was 95.5%.
  • In 2017-18, the percentage of patients receiving subsequent treatment for cancer where the treatment modality was radiotherapy began that treatment within 31 days was 97.1%.

Following its independent assessment, the United Kingdom Statistics Authority has designated the statistics as National Statistics, in accordance with the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 and signifying compliance with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

Designation can be broadly interpreted to mean that the statistics:
o   meet identified user needs;
o   are well explained and readily accessible;
o   are produced according to sound methods; and
o   are managed impartially and objectively in the public interest.

Once statistics have been designated as National Statistics it is a statutory requirement that the Code of Practice shall continue to be observed.

Contact address and email

You can obtain further details about the statistics published in this section or comment on the section by contacting the following address:
Cancer Waiting Times Team
NHS England
Room 5E15
Quarry House
Leeds
LS2 7UE

Email: cancer-waits@dh.gsi.gov.uk