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Widow at Westminster for MP's debate into pancreatic cancer

A widow from Scunthorpe will be in Parliament today to listen to MPs discuss the illness which killed her husband. The visit by Maggie Watts, 50, to Westminster, is a major milestone in her campaign to increase funding for research into pancreatic cancer. Her husband Kevin Watts, a local builder, died from the disease aged 48 in 2008. His death spurred mum of one Mrs Watts to organise a 106,000-name on-line petition and force a debate in the House of Commons.

Actress Julie Hesmondhalgh at the University of Manchester with scientists and Maggie Watts Credit: Maggie Watts

Former Coronation Street actress Julie Hesmondhalgh, whose character Hayley Cropper was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the long-running soap opera, joined Maggie's campaign after becoming aware of the disease’s low survival rate - around three per cent five years after diagnosis. The debate will be led by Scunthorpe MP Nic Dakin.

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Patients urge rethink over cancer drug treatment

Six years ago Abiraterone was hailed as a medical breakthrough that could offer men extra time with loved ones and a chance to delay chemotherapy and its debilitating side effects.

Today the body that recommends what can and cannot be paid for said it 'wasn't cost effective'.

Prostate cancer patients have now been told that the life-extending drug will not be routinely prescribed unless they have chemotherapy.

One man from North Yorkshire who is fighting prostate cancer is calling for a rethink:

Cancer drug funding appeal rejected for the third time

A cancer sufferer's appeal for the NHS to pay for a drug she says is prolonging her life has been turned down for the third time.

Laura Loftus, from Leeds, is battling the health service, and also having to personally pay for the treatment at a cost of one thousand pounds a week.

She told ITV Calendar she is refusing to give up her fight for good health and her battle for the NHS to pick up the bill.

Tina Gelder reports:

Could early diagnosis have saved cancer victim's life?

The family of a young mother who died of cervical cancer want to know whether her life could have been saved if she had been diagnosed earlier.

Keely Devine from Leeds, was 23 when she passed away. Despite complaining of symptoms during a number of trips to her GP and the A&E department of Leeds General Infirmary, the cancer wasn't picked up for over 2 years. Kate Walby reports.

A spokesperson from NHS England, West Yorkshire, said: "This is a tragic case and our thoughts are with Keely Devine's family. Out of respect for confidentiality, we will not be commenting on this individual patient's case.”

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£1,000 a week for cancer drug: NHS England defends decision not to prescribe

While Laura Loftus from Leeds says each case for being given the drug Avastin should be judged on a case-by-case basis, the NHS governing body says this is not how it works.

Laura says the drug is extending her life and pays out almost £1,000 a week for it.

"When the decision is taken that a treatment is not of benefit for an individual we understand how distressing this can be. The decision is however based on whether the treatment will be effective and benefit the individual.

“There is an opportunity for the patient and their clinician to appeal against the process.

"Appeals can only take into account any new clinical information that has not been previously considered, and which could have influenced the outcome of the decision, or if there is any doubt about the actual process through which the case has been considered.

"If this happened this would be considered by a new independent Appeals Panel led by the regional medical director.”

– NHS England spokesman

Fundraising event held to buy cancer drugs for Leeds woman

A fundraising event was held today for a woman who has to fork out nearly a thousand pounds a month for cancer drugs that she cannot get on the NHS.

Laura Loftus from Leeds has cancer, and says the drug Avastin could extend her life. She can't get it on the NHS because she's not having chemotherapy. Helen Steel reports.

Stephen sheds pounds to gain pounds for cancer

This time last year Stephen Bielby from Sutton in Craven weighed over 23 stone and would not even think of having a go at an extreme obstacle assault course.

But after his wife was diagnosed with cancer he accepted the challenge to lose the weight and take part in one, to help raise money for the charity which gave him and his family vital support during such a difficult time. Sarah Clark reports.

East Yorkshire hospital up for national award

A team from Castle Hill Hospital in Cottingham has been recognised nationally for its work to improve the lives of people in our region who have beaten cancer.

East Yorkshire hospital up for national cancer award Credit: Press Association

The Survivorship Team, jointly funded by Macmillan and Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, was set up just over two years ago in order to help people of all ages through their recovery journeys.

The team focuses on providing support not just in the physical sense, but also offers help with emotional, social, financial and psychological matters too, and is one of just a handful of its kind in the country.

East Yorkshire hospital up for national cancer award

Now, in recognition of its work to improve the lives of hundreds of people from across East Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire, the team has been shortlisted for a 2014 Macmillan Professionals Award in Team Excellence.

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