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NHS spends millions on wasted scanning equipment

Published on 25/10/2011

A new report has revealed that the NHS wastes millions of pounds a year buying expensive equipment and not optimising their use, using a ‘fragmented’ and ‘uncoordinated’ approach to purchasing.

MPs in the Public Accounts Committee have warned that the way these machines are brought is ‘not providing value for money for the taxpayer’, and patients are being left for a ‘scandalous’ amount of time for diagnosis and treatment.

Over the last three years, NHS Trusts in England have spent around £50million annually on MRI scanners and CT scanners, as well as Linac machines for cancer treatment.

However, the NHS is failing to capitalise on these machines- they can be used from 40 to over 100 hours each week, but the number of CT scans carried out per machine ranged from 7,800 to 22,000 per year.

Margaret Hodge, chair of the committee, said:

"High value equipment in the NHS - like MRI and CT scanners - is worth around £1 billion, but the way this equipment is bought and used is not providing value for money for the taxpayer."

Over the following three years, over half of these machines will need replacing, costing the NHS a further £460 million.

This report comes after news that a number of Primary Care Trusts are setting upper targets on diagnostic scans like MRI, CT and ultrasound. Five PCTs have actually scrapped access entirely to at least one type of test.

If prompt diagnosis is important to you, look for a health insurance policy that covers all diagnostic tests and scans.

Aviva offers Speedy Diagnosis, a significantly cheaper policy than full private health insurance, covering only specialist consultations for medical diagnosis and not treatment. Compare health insurance policies online with ActiveQuote now to make sure you don’t get caught out by the NHS cuts.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2011

Categories:  NHS and Hospitals
NHS spends millions on wasted scanning equipmentA new report has revealed that the NHS wastes millions of pounds a year buying expensive equipment and not optimising their use, using a ‘fr    tweet it on twittershare with your friends on Facebookshare with your friends on MySpaceBlog it on your LinkedIn profile

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