The APPG on Brain Tumours is a group of MPs and Peers from all political parties that aims to raise awareness of the brain tumour community in Westminster in order to improve research, diagnosis, information, support, treatment and care outcomes.
Over the last year, the APPG held a series of events exploring the impact of a brain tumour on the quality of life, from the point of diagnosis, through the course of treatment and end of life care.
My lovely wife Wendy died aged just 54, less than six months after being diagnosed with a glioblastoma. When I realised how successive governments had underfunded research into this dreadful disease, I was determined to make my feelings known at the APPG. I was very impressed with the seniority of politicians who attended, which made me hope that my experience would lead to action. I would certainly be happy to make a further presentation should the opportunity arise.
Following the election in May 2015, a number of MPs have made a commitment to support the work of the group. The following have been elected as officers of the APPG:
We will shortly be announcing a calendar of events for the APPG in 2015-16, organised jointly with Brain Tumour Research. If you are interested in attending one of the events, or would like to find out more information about the APPG, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
On Wednesday, December 9, 2015, the APPG on Brain Tumours held a meeting in Westminster to discuss the new five year Independent Cancer Taskforce Strategy.
Emma Greenwood, Head of Policy Development at Cancer Research UK and a member of the Independent Cancer Taskforce secretariat, gave some background and context to the strategy and touched on some of the recommendations which can improve outcomes for rarer cancers. Emma spoke optimistically about how 2016 presents cancer charities with an opportunity to engage with organisations responsible for the implementation of the strategy and to help shape the implementation of some of the recommendations. We also heard from Dr Ahmadur Rahman, a Consultant Clinical Oncologist in Neuro-oncology at Queens Hospital in Essex, and Gala Rowley and April Watkins who are both ambassadors for the charity and directly affected by brain tumours.
The discussion that followed drew on the experiences of the speakers and we heard from health professionals and people affected by brain tumours about what improvements should be made to improve diagnosis, patient experience, quality of life and survival for people with a brain tumour as well as what the immediate priorities in the implementation of the cancer strategy should be.