On Thursday 25th October, Sir David Amess MP asked the Leader of the House of Commons, Andrea Leadsom, for a debate on childhood cancers.
The MP for Southend West recounted the tragic story of his constituent, Mrs Lorraine Mitchell, whose beloved son Finn passed away in June 2018. Sir David said, “the family are still very raw about it and, although they do not wish to blame anyone for his death, they feel there is a lack of awareness of the symptoms of childhood cancer.”
The Leader of the House of Commons responded to Sir David's request, by saying:
“I am so sorry to hear about the loss of Finn. I am sure the whole House will want to send our sincere condolences to Lorraine and her family. Cancer is a terrible disease but, thankfully, survival rates have been improving year on year. For childhood cancers, 82% of children now survive for five years or more, but of course there is so much more to do and that figure will be no consolation to Lorraine and her family.
“This month the Prime Minister has made it clear that she is determined to introduce a package of measures to invest in state-of-the-art technology to transform how we diagnose cancers, as well as to boost research and innovation. My hon. Friend the Member for Southend West is right that it is also vital to raise awareness among doctors, who often do not expect to see cancers in the very young, so that we do not miss out on early diagnosis.”
Sir David was glad to see that the Government is taking steps towards tackling the tragedy of childhood cancers, but he still believes that more can be done.