AN urgent inquiry into the findings of a report on radiotherapy provision across the UK is to be called for.
The All Party Parliamentary Group for Radiotherapy (APPGRT) launched its manifesto for radiotherapy a year ago and this summer conducted its own inquiry into the current and future state of radiotherapy provision across the UK
IPEM provided written evidence to that inquiry, and IPEM member Dr Vivian Cosgrove, Head of Radiotherapy Physics at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, was then invited to provide oral evidence to the inquiry at the House of Commons on two occasions.
Following the publication of the inquiry’s findings, the APPGRT is to request that the House of Commons Select Committee on Health and Social Care undertake an urgent formal inquiry into the issues uncovered by the APPGRT to ensure more patients’ lives can be saved by better organisation and funding for the service.
In its conclusion, the APPGRT stated it was concerned about the gap that has emerged between what patients see as concerns (travel times) and what professionals advise about solutions to save lives (increased investment in IT, equipment, workforce and advanced radiotherapy) with how NHS England is responding and commissioning the service. It added there appeared to be insufficient accountability or oversight and engagement by NHS England with the professionals and industry.
The APPGRT also stated the evidence received to date suggested the Department of Health & Social Care would not be able to achieve the improvements in survival promised by the NHS 10-year plan with the current ‘seemingly failing policies’ being pursued by NHS England.
Professor Mark Tooley, IPEM’s President, said: ‘The conclusions reached by the APPGRT are concerning and I hope the call for a full inquiry by the Health Select Committee is answered positively.
‘The fact IPEM, and in particular Dr Cosgrove, was able to provide such valuable input into the APPGRT’s inquiry demonstrates just how important it is that our members’ voice in such a crucial area as this is heard.
‘IPEM stands ready to contribute to any such formal inquiry, as we have done many times in the past.’
You can read the APPGRT’s findings in full here.
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