Huge fall in cancer patients seeing specialists during coronavirus pandemic – BBC News

There’s been a dramatic drop in the number of people being seen by cancer specialists during the pandemic.

NHS England figures show a big fall in cancer referrals by GPs in April this year – down 60% – compared to 2019. Urgent breast cancer referrals saw an even larger drop – down by 78%

Cancer charities are worried people who have symptoms are too frightened to seek help.

Meanwhile the government has been accused of withholding publication of a report containing measures to protect ethnic minority groups from catching coronavirus. It follows a review by Public Health England which confirmed that people from Black, Asian and minority backgrounds were dying at disproportionately higher rates.

A senior health official has told the BBC a second report containing recommendations to protect BAME communities has been drawn up but not released.

Sophie Raworth presents BBC News at Ten reports from Health Correspondent Lauren Moss and Community Affairs Correspondent Rianna Croxford.

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