If Labour wins the next election, diagnostic tests for cancer will be made available within seven days of concerns first being raised.
This is a pledge that will be made by Prime Minister Gordon Brown (pictured) at the party’s Brighton conference, and will be central to the government’s focus on public-service reform.
The pledge will funded by £1bn of savings in the NHS capital budget over five years as the hospital-building programme nears completion.
This will allow the government to redirect resources towards diagnosis capacity and improving primary and community care facilities, according to senior Labour spokesmen.
The emphasis on early diagnosis and intervention, with more and faster tests, will aim to achieve the best survival rates in the world.
A new five-year plan on diagnostic capacity is to be unveiled this autumn. Cancer tests on the scale envisaged by Mr Brown, including the right to see a specialist within a fortnight, may save up to 10,000 lives a year.
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