Ageing Well - Health



Cancer is a condition where the cells in a particular part of the body grow and reproduce uncontrollably. These cells can then invade the healthy tissue around the tumour site and in other parts of the body. More than one in two people will be affected by cancer in their lifetime.

In the UK, the four most common cancers are:

Breast cancer

Lung Cancer

Bowel cancer

Prostate Cancer

There are around 363,000 new cancer cases diagnosed each year.  Smoking is the largest cause of cancer in the UK. Being overweight or obese is the UK’s biggest cause of cancer after smoking. Overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, exposure to certain substances at work, exposure to certain infections, drinking alcohol, and eating too little fibre each cause 3-4% of cancer cases in the UK.


Hartlepool’s rate for under 75 mortality rate from cancer is at a 15 year low of 150.1 per 100,000 population, however this is the highest rate in the north east and the 3rd highest rate in England.


For 2015/17 Hartlepool’s under 75 mortality rate from cancer is over a third larger than the England average, and almost a fifth larger than the north east average. The gap between Hartlepool and England of 51.2 per 100,000 is almost two thirds larger than it was in 2011/13. Against the north east regional average Hartlepool has now been statistically worse for 3 years, and the gap in 2015/17 is more than four times the size of the gap in 2011/13.


For under 75 mortality from cancer considered preventable Hartlepool again has the highest rate in the north east, and the 4th highest rate in England.


The rate of 116.0 is a 4 year high and has caused the gap between Hartlepool’s rate and that of the England average to increase by 50% since 2011/13. Against the north east average Hartlepool maintained a position of statistical inferiority for a 2nd year, after a three year period of statistical similarity. Hartlepool’s rate of 116 per 100,000 is 25% larger than the north east average in 2015/17.


For breast cancer specific under 75 mortality Hartlepool has the highest rate in England, and for the overall mortality rate from lung cancer Hartlepool has the 7th highest rate in England.


For lung cancer registrations in 2015/17 Hartlepool had the 8th highest rate in England, and for oesophageal cancer registrations for 2015/17 Hartlepool the 4th highest rate in England.


Current Services  

Hartlepool is a member of a locality multidisciplinary group that meets to ensure good quality cancer services are provided for the populations of Hartlepool, Stockton , South Tees, Hambleton , Richmond and Whitby (CC) areas; within community , social , primary and secondary care settings in conjunction with tertiary centres, voluntary organisations and the Northern Cancer Alliance . The purpose of this  group is to oversee implementation of the national cancer strategy across the population areas, with the benefit of  sharing  knowledge, expertise and resources to benefit local areas to improve patient pathway processes, patient outcomes and experiences. The group advises commissioning organisations on the priorities for resourcing across the whole cancer agenda, this includes screening , prevention, treatment and living beyond cancer.

Data shared in the group helps to inform local plans to achieve performance assurance against national targets.

For example -

In Hartlepool recent data has shown poor screening rates per GP practice   - However  6 out of 9 practices do not meet the England rate for both cervical screening and bowel screening in the 60-69 years age group. ( see enclosed tables ) . work to address these  rates are part of future intentions.

Future Intentions 

To help improve screening uptake at practice levels  and support GP practice staff to increase screening uptake. The ”No Fear campaign “ is being launched across the region and work is planned to support practices to become no fear sites.

There is work planned in practices as part of the “reduce your risk “ work for bowel screening as part of a Teesside approach to screening.

As part of the Public Health Strategy for Hartlepool  the future intention is to  support more companies to become involved with the Better Health at Work award ( BHAWA). This  will  encourage employees to access health information, be more informed and access screening initiatives provided in the workplace.

Regarding risk factors of cancer  -

Obesity services are being developed in Hartlepool to use a whole systems approach to prevent, treat and support around the obesity agenda ( Could do with wording differently ? )

Additionally a  new approach to support Hartlepool residents who want to stop smoking is being launched. The integrated community based model for stop  smoking support is designed to address the changing habits of the Hartlepool population and therefore provide opportunities for support on a wide basis .