The Royal College of Radiologists (RCR) in the UK has called on the new Conservative majority Government to prioritise and boost funding for five areas across NHS imaging and cancer care.
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“You have the power and the opportunity to give patients a sustainably funded, properly-equipped National Health Service (NHS), with imaging and cancer services fit to provide 21st century care,” RCR President Dr Jeanette Dickson told Prime Minister, Boris Johnson in a letter.
In her letter, Dr Dickson urged the Prime Minister to focus on the following:
- Increase staff number: over the next five years there needs to be at least treble the number of radiologists in training and double the number of clinical oncologists in training.
- State-of-the-art equipment: state-of-the-art equipment is essential for faster diagnosis and treatment so a programme of investment needs to be established.
- Better facilities and more space: many NHS buildings are not large enough for modern equipment or multi-disciplinary cancer care teams. Major investment is needed.
- IT: interconnectivity and interoperability needs to be upgraded for quick sharing of patient data and images from examination.
- Brexit: healthcare remains concerned about the impact Brexit will have on care services. The NHS needs assurance that opportunities from Britain leaving the European Union will be leveraged to benefit the service for staff and patients. This includes facilitating access to skilled healthcare staff, medicines and devices, in addition to sustained research relationship.
The NHS is a sensitive area for British voters as a service who want to preserve and protect it. Established in 1948, it has been much admired around the world as a sound model of universal healthcare. However, it’s creaking under the pressures of falling staffing numbers and the need to integrate technology. The new Government has pledged an £34bn per year put in to the NHS by 2023. Current staff will be expanded with 50,000 nurses, 6,000 doctors in GP surgeries and 6,000 primary care staff, such as physiotherapists and pharmacists.
“We urge you not to squander that chance, and look forward to working with you and advising partners across the health service to ensure that every future patient gets the rapid, effective diagnoses and treatment they deserve,” wrote Dickson. “You have the power and the opportunity to give patients a sustainably funded, properly-equipped NHS, with imaging and cancer services fit to provide 21st century care.
Source: Royal College of Radiologists
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