Written evidence submitted by Eli Lilly and Company


Lilly is a US-headquartered pharmaceutical company with a major commitment to the UK. We are proud of our heritage in this country: Lilly UK was our first business to open outside the US in 1934, and today we remain a significant contributor to UK innovation and a key partner to the NHS on clinical research and health delivery, advancing science in areas of high unmet clinical need including diabetes, oncology, immunology, COVID-19 and Alzheimer’s disease.

We welcome the opportunity to respond to this inquiry on NHS backlogs and waiting times. Please note that for the purposes of this inquiry our response will focus on disruption in cancer services.

The pandemic has led to unprecedented disruption for cancer patients with significant backlogs across the whole cancer pathway:




GP Referrals for a suspected cancer diagnosis







Clinical trials



December 2021

[i] NHS Long Term Plan: Cancer.

[ii] Richards M. (2019). Independent review of national cancer screening programmes in England: interim report of emerging findings.

[iii] CRUK (2020). Over 2 million people waiting for cancer screening, tests and treatments.

[iv] Breast Cancer Now (2021). 50% rise in number of women in UK who have not had vital breast screening since services restarted.

[v] Hudson S et al. (2016). Effectiveness of timed and non-timed second appointments in improving uptake in breast cancer screening.

[vi] NHS England (2020). Cancer waiting times.

[vii] National Audit Office (2021). NHS backlogs and waiting times in England.

[viii] IPPR (2021). Building back cancer services in England.

[ix] OECD (2021). Health Care Quality Indicators.

[x] Royal College of Radiologists (2020). Clinical radiology England workforce census 2019.

[xi] Richards, M. (2020). Diagnostics: Recovery and Renewal. Report of the Independent Review of Diagnostic Services for NHS England.

[xii] NHS Confederation analysis of 2021 Autumn Statement and Spending Review.