Macmillan cancer support

Age is just a number… so are older people with cancer treated differently?

A DJ in her 70s, a seventh dan black belt in jujitsu in her 80s, and a professor in green sciences, who at 72 is convinced he can still innovate are all people for whom age is just a number. So why do older people in the UK receive different cancer care?

The UK has some of the worst cancer survival rates in Europe for older people, and Macmillan Cancer Support has launched a campaign to change that.

Macmillan’s Age Old Excuse campaign does more that just highlight how active older people can be, but points a finger at the discrimination against older people who have cancer, and calls on people to join the campaign to change that.

The figures are shocking. A survey of health professionals found that ‘45% have dealt with a cancer patient who has been refused treatment on the grounds they were too old’, and ‘48% think assumptions about older people are resulting in them not getting the best treatment’.

But the campaign is more than just changing assumptions. It calls for older people to be offered treatment and care based on their fitness rather than their age, and services to be made accessible to meet the needs of older people.

The Macmillan Age Old Excuse campaign has more details of why the campaign is necessary, and resources to help support older people with cancer, such as advice on what questions to ask.

And the campaign calls on your support, pop over and pop in your details to help change the way older people with cancer are treated in the UK