MORECAMBE Bay Trust has responded to the latest cancer treatment waiting time data following King Charles III's diagnosis. 

Buckingham Palace announced the King had received a cancer diagnosis but it was not revealed which one he had. 

Figures published by NHS England that were released on February 8 gave the latest monthly statistics on waiting times for suspected and diagnosed cancer patients in December. 

According to this data, 97.8 per cent of patients were treated within one month from the decision to treat, which is above the NHS standard of 96 per cent.

However, only 69.5 per cent received treatment within two months (62 days) of a referral, which is below the NHS standard of 85 per cent. 

The University Hospital Morecambe Bay Trust say 'benchmarking' is 'misleading'.

The MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale Tim Farron said: "I think the King has been really upon at his diagnosis - I think it's brave and I think it's helpful.

When asked if people in the north-west of England will be receiving a lower standard of cancer treatment than the monarch, he said: "The quality of the treatment is not that different. The difference is the speed of access."

Mr Farron said that the lesson learnt for the public is: "If you've got the tiniest doubt - go and get checked out." 

Scott McLean, Chief Operating Officer, UHMBT, said: “It is vital that patients with cancer are seen and treated as soon as possible. There is a national 31-day standard for the amount of time it should take from when a decision to treat is made to the treatment being completed. In December 2023, UHMBT’s performance was 97.8% of patients against a target of 96%, so we exceeded the national standard.

“There is still work to do to ensure even more patients are seen quickly and our teams are dedicated to ensuring our local communities receive the best care possible in a timely way.

“The NHS prioritises cancer and we are ready and waiting for people to come forward if they have worrying symptoms. It is hugely important that people take up all opportunities for screening and contact their doctor if they have signs or symptoms that aren’t normal for them. Cancer that’s diagnosed at an early stage, when it isn’t too large and hasn’t spread, is more likely to be treated successfully so getting checked really does save lives.

“When high profile figures speak publicly about their own diagnosis, this can also have an incredibly positive impact in that people feel more confident to speak to a doctor and more cancers are likely to be identified at an early stage.”