The Guide to Protecting Your Life Bubble

Public or Private Cancer Treatment?

cancer cell

It seems as though there’s a news story every day about the shifting changes here in the UK towards an increase in people opting for private treatments for any and all medical issues. One area which has seen large growth is cancer treatment. In today’s Bubble Book blogpost, we’re going to look at some points that ask why someone would choose public or private treatment.

cancer cell

1. Public is easily accessible

Practically all NHS hospitals here in the UK offer some form of cancer treatment. Depending on the level of the illness though, a person from Glasgow for example, may find themselves having to receive treatment in a London hospital. This means they’re hundreds of miles form home and without family there for continued support. It’s a dichotomy of how the NHS has to be run where there is in theory a massive network of support, but the strain of that network revolves around how far it has to reach.

2. Private is also easily accessible

Because those in the private industry in essence set up their own clinic wherever they choose, the chances are that if you live near a city you’ll be able to get private treatment much closer to home. This has seen a growing trend of people preferring to be deferred from NHS hospitals far away to local private clinics as it doesn’t interfere with life as much.

3. Public is free in many respects

The most obvious reason for choosing public cancer treatment is the fact that is free and thankfully limits the financial strain cancer can put a family under. For the NHS, cancer is a very costly illness and one which is on the up. This year, they announced a large increase in the drug budget as much of the cost of cafe is housed in this area.

Four in five people with cancer are affected by the financial impact of cancer, on average incurring costs of £570 a month.

Cancer charity Macmillan worked out this cost in their research of the hidden costs of cancer (which you can read more about here), highlighting that even for those treating cancer through the NHS, there still is a downside to this option.


Cervical Cancer Infograph

4. Private has advanced options

Because private clinics don’t have to adhere to such strict regulation, they can form their own treatment plans however they choose. For example, a patient in need of kidney cancer treatment on the NHS may find themselves having to take specific drugs based on criteria that medicine had to gain for approval before use. This can be because of the price of the medicine, how long its been used and what improvements it can make. Now if that same patient was in a private clinic, they could avail of new cancer drugs which may already be used abroad successfully but just haven’t been given approval for general use here yet.

For more information on private treatments for lung cancer you can visit the following link for the LOC London –

5. It depends on preference

Arguably the most important point to think about when faced with such a serious problem that we overlook: remember what the patient wants. When someone in the family is sick, we always aim directly for the quickest solution to the problem. Like every other major decision, knowing how those with a possible diagnosis feel and what they think about treatment options is key.

6. Cancer treatment is always improving

The options we all have for fighting cancer have come on such a long way over the last few decades. When in the 60s and 70s the use of chemotherapy was the go-to approach, we’re now able to use radiotherapy that can target on an almost microscopic level and even immunotherapy can give our natural defences a skyrocketed boost.

We hope you learned something new about how to think about cancer treatment and realise that there is more than just one option for everyone fighting this illness.


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May 2018
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