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English men facing cancer lottery

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Men in England face a ‘postcode lottery’ in their chances of surviving prostate cancer, campaigners have said.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show men from some parts of the country are almost five times as likely to die from the disease as those in other areas.

A study by the Prostate Cancer Charter for Action found death rates were more than 25% above the England average in almost one in five parliamentary constituencies.

Adjusting for age, the country’s 2007 average was 25 deaths per 100,000 people. The death rate in Tottenham, north London, was 57 deaths per 100,000 people, while it was 12 per 100,000 for men in south-east Cambridgeshire. This means men in Tottenham are almost five times more likely to die of prostate cancer than men in Cambridgeshire.

The Prostate Cancer Charter for Action blamed the disparity on areas not implementing key guidance from the NICE.

Spokesman and consultant urologist, Dr Frank Chinegwundoh, said: ‘It is not enough that prostate cancer services are improving as a whole if patients face such a lottery in the care they receive.

‘We need better services for all patients across the country, not just a lucky few.’

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