A Macmillan GP has spoken out after it was revealed in Worcester alone almost 700 people are worried that delays in cancer treatment because of Covid-19 may have affected their chances of surviving the illness.

Dr Alison Riley. Macmillan GP for Worcestershire is encouraging anyone affected by cancer to make use of the round-the-clock support provided my Macmillan during the pandemic.

She said: "It’s clear that in Worcester, as well as across the country, this is the most worrying time in recent history to get a cancer diagnosis.

"People with potentially worrying symptoms – such as an unexplained new lump, a cough that doesn’t go away or a change in bowel habits – are more reluctant to seek medical attention because they don’t want to burden the NHS or they are worried about catching Covid-19.

"But GPs across Worcestershire are open if you are worried about possible cancer symptoms, and screening and other vital tests have resumed in a Covid-safe way. The NHS is still here for you.

"At least 150,000 people have been newly diagnosed with cancer in the UK since March, with many having to hear this devastating news for the first time with no one by their side, due to Covid-19 restrictions. We know that people are really struggling, and emotions are heightened.

"We’re hearing from people every day who are feeling incredibly isolated, who are too scared to go outside because of their vulnerability to coronavirus and who have found receiving a diagnosis and going through treatment without loved ones by their side really distressing.

"For many, this pandemic feels like the worst possible Groundhog Day. We want them to know that they aren’t alone.

"We are encouraging anyone affected by cancer to make use of our round-the-clock support in this crisis. On our support line – open seven days a week from 8am to 8pm on 0808 808 00 00.