Duncan Garner: It's time to get hostile over New Zealand's cancer care

OPINION: This first proper report by the Cancer Control agency into the state of cancer in New Zealand leaves me wanting more - more honesty for a start. 

Not that it's dishonest - it just fails to tell us where we are at with this Government.

Is it really an independent report? If so, be brave - because cancer is cruel. 

The report glosses over Pharmac; get hostile with them, tell us which drugs get funded overseas that are not funded here.

You can survive some cancers in Australia but not here because they have the drugs we don't.

Don't sanitise the truth. Don't protect this Government, this health ministry, or Pharmac.

Instead, lay it out. 

But some credit; the report is brutally honest on some points. It says we don't really know much about cancer because we don't collect the right data. 

And outcomes are far worse for Māori.

But when you tell us we have slipped down the world rankings for cancer care over the past 25 years, tell me the unbridled truth; it's been a gigantic tumble.

Speak truth to power and challenge the bastards. This is life and death stuff.

Why did a GP send my dad to physio for six months for a sore back, only to finally find out it was kidney cancer? The delay killed him.

If we are rubbish, tell me - even if you don't know yet how to fix it. At least we can then start honestly trying.

But don't give me fluff. 

Fluff is designed to protect those in power and the conga line of apologists around them.

Duncan Garner hosts The AM Show.