Tens of thousands of patients can die due to NHS This has suspended this large percentage of regular care to focus on tackling Covid-19, lawmakers have warned.
The Health and Social Care Committee in the House of Commons said in an extremely difficult report that diseases that were not detected or treated include cancer and heart disease.
“We’ve heard of severe disruption of services, especially cancer, and here we can look at tens of thousands of preventable deaths in a year,” said former Health Minister Jeremy Hunt, who chairs the inter-party selection committee.
Members of Parliament confirmed that many hospitals stopped performing cancer surgery as the pandemic spread in March, although the head of the National Health Service in England, Sir Simon Stevens, confirmed that this care would continue.
Once the lockdown began on March 23, urgent referrals from a GP for cancer were reduced by 62%, the number of MRIs and CT scans to diagnose the disease decreased by 75% and by mid-May, 36,000 cancer operations had been canceled.
“Cancer services and treatments have been suspended or otherwise changed due to capacity constraints, reallocation of resources and in order to manage risks to patients, especially those who are immunocompromised and at higher risk of infection and then the inability to recover from the Coronavirus,” the committee found.
Macmillan cancer The support team said that disrupting normal care had resulted in a “cancerous time bomb” for untreated patients, and that the diagnosis of some had been delayed by six months.
More than 6,400 patients in England with suspected cancer have waited more than 100 days to begin treatment or undergo a diagnostic test since being referred by their GP as an urgent case, according to Health Service Journal. Revealed on Tuesday. Of these, 472 were known to have cancer and await treatment commencement.
The Breast Cancer Charity Now said this week that nearly a million women across the UK have not been able to have a mammogram since March due to the suspension of breast cancer screening. It estimated that about 8,600 of these women had a late diagnosis.
The NHS Consortium Hospital Group previously warned that shutting down Covid care would “come at a heavy cost” for those affected.
Hospitals It struggled with a large backlog of tests, scans and treatment, especially surgery, that piled up. Chris Hobson, chief executive of NHS Providers, speaking on behalf of NHS Trusts in England, denied that the NHS would ever become a “Covid-only service” and predicted that it would “take several months or even years to catch up with the backlog”.
In an urgent call for action, lawmakers also asked the government and the NHS to start testing all health service personnel every week for the coronavirus, especially with the second wave of Covid-19 and winter on their way.
Regular testing of NHS’s 1.4 million employees is vital to prevent a hospital-acquired COVID outbreak and to make sure the service is able to maintain normal care for the next few months, which is what hospitals have been asked to do.
Ministers have promised a weekly test but this has not happened in all but a few of the trust funds.
The committee asked Professor Chris Whitty, Chief Medical Officer, to clarify whether the failure to fulfill this pledge thus far was due to the beleaguered test system in England lacking the capacity to handle the large number of additional tests involved.
“Weekly testing of NHS employees has been promised repeatedly in hotspot areas but has not yet been delivered. Failure to do so creates a real risk that the NHS will have to roll back to being a largely COVID-19 restricted service during a boom,” Hunt said. a second.
Department the health A welfare spokesperson said: “The decisive and intense measures that we have taken, guided by scientific advice, mean that the NHS has not been overwhelmed even at the height of the virus, so that everyone has always been able to get the best care possible.
NHS employees with symptoms can access testing as a priority and staff in outbreak areas can access the tests if they are asymptomatic. We will continue to expand test availability as our capacity continues to expand to 500,000 tests per day by the end of October.
“Diagnosing and treating diseases like cancer has remained a priority throughout the pandemic and to help the NHS prepare for winter, we have provided an additional £ 3 billion in funding.”