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Delayed cancer checks and unpaid staff in bankrupt NHS

Published on 07/10/2011

NHS hospital trusts are taking extraordinary measures to make efficiency savings, to the detriment of both patients and NHS workers.

The Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust has been ordering GPs to hold off making referrals for essential cancer checks in order to reach targets.

GPs have been told that if patients cannot attend a specific appointment within the two week target, they should put off the referral so the hospital won’t miss the Government recommended standard. This means patients who could be suffering from cancer will wait longer before seeing a specialist.

Dr Paul Roblin, chief executive of Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Local Medical Committee, told the trade magazine Pulse: “This is the perverse effect of targets. People start playing games if targets are likely to be breached.

Recent statistics from the Department of Health have also shown that patients are having to wait longer than the target of six weeks for CT scans, MRI scans and hearing tests.

But with trusts being told to make efficiency savings totaling £20billion over the next 4 years, it is not just patients who are losing out in the NHS saving plans.

Whipps Cross University Trust in East London has asked all 3,400 of its workers to voluntarily sacrifice part of their annual leave to tackle the trust’s £4.5million debt.

In the letter to staff, Whipps Cross’s chief executive, Cathy Geddes, wrote:

"As part of these measures we have asked staff if they are willing to volunteer to sacrifice annual leave and/or perform additional unpaid sessional duties.”

With the NHS having to take such drastic action, there has never been a better time to purchase private health insurance. Health insurance will give you treatment in a private hospital of your choice, at a time of your choice, avoiding the NHS waiting lists.

Compare health insurance policies online now to gain peace of mind about your future health.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2011

Categories:  NHS and Hospitals
Delayed cancer checks and unpaid staff in bankrupt NHS NHS hospital trusts are taking extraordinary measures to make efficiency savings, to the detriment of both patients and NHS workers. T    tweet it on twittershare with your friends on Facebookshare with your friends on MySpaceBlog it on your LinkedIn profile

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