Today, in the House of Commons, Cumbrian MP Tim Farron had a request for a meeting concerning the government's support for a mobile radiotherapy unit at Westmorland General Hospital ignored.
It came after the Minister responsible for cancer care, Helen Whately, also ignored Tim's request for the Government's support on a campaign from the All Party Parliamentary Group on radiotherapy. The campaign seeks a £1 billion boost in radiotherapy treatment to increase capacity and update technology.
Speaking in the debate, Tim said: "In South Cumbria 27% of people diagnosed with cancer are waiting over two months for their first treatment, and in North Cumbria that figure is 44%.
"Imagine how terrifying it is to be told that you have a dangerous disease and that you may have to wait two months for your first intervention. People are dying needlessly."
In her reply, the Minister drew attention to the fact that the Government were attempting to reduce backlogs across the NHS but chose to ignore all other points made by Tim.
Speaking afterwards, Tim said: "The disappointing response from the Minister is such a betrayal to the many people who are suffering unnecessarily.
"Tory incompetence has created this backlog in cancer treatment.
"The answer is obvious. We need more mobile radiotherapy services, and we need them now. The Minister's decision not to support this boost in radiotherapy services by the APPG on Radiotherapy and ignore my request for a meeting about radiotherapy development at Westmorland General is unnecessarily cruel and disappointing."