latest health care news

16.10.19

Offer NHS cancer screenings during lunch breaks to halt falling attendances, report recommends

Up to 10,000 lives a year could be saved if NHS screening programmes were offered in a wider variety of locations and times, according to recent findings by Prof Sir Mike Richards.

Sir Richards, a former national cancer director and chief inspector of hospitals, has recommended offering cancer screenings during lunch breaks as part of a bid to halt a severe drop in people attending appointments.

The findings come from the newly published Report of The Independent Review of Adult Screening Programmes in England which Sir Richards has been working on since November 2018.

Most screenings take place in hospitals and GP surgeries which some people may find hard to get to, whether that is down to transport issues or work commitments. Sir Richards says that holding screenings in a range of locations would allow people to not skip the all-important screening that could save their life.

But there is work being done to offer some of the tests via mobile units at other health clinics, such as sexual health centers for cervical screening. Evening opening hours and weekends would also be beneficial, according to the report.

The particular areas that the government asked Richards to look at were:

  • Bowel cancer (men and women ages 60 to 74, or from 55 in some pilot areas)
  • Cervical cancer (women ages 25 to 64)
  • Breast cancer (women ages 50 to 71)
  • Abdominal aortic aneurysms (a weakness in the main blood vessel supplying the heart in men ages 65)
  • Diabetic eye screening

Through his findings, Sir Richards recommends that implementing methods such as text message reminders for screenings and using social media campaigns to build awareness would increase attendance.

He also says that increasing awareness of trans and gender diverse issues amongst screening health professionals would again encourage more people to attend screenings.

The report also argued that outdated IT systems used for screenings must be changed as they are currently risking patients’ safety. It also pointed to the new test being developed for bowel cancer screenings which has been in the works with numerous delays for over a decade, meaning less efficient screenings are still ongoing.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

featured articles

View all News

last word

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad: ‘We all have a role to play in getting innovations quicker’

Haseeb Ahmad, president of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), sits down with National Health Executive as part of our Last Word Q&A series. Would you talk us throu more > more last word articles >

health service focus

View all News

comment

NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

23/09/2019NHS England dementia director prescribes rugby for mental health and dementia patients

Reason to celebrate as NHS says watching rugby can be good for your mental ... more >
Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >

interviews

Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

24/10/2019Matt Hancock says GP recruitment is on the rise to support ‘bedrock of the NHS’

Today, speaking at the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) annual... more >

the scalpel's daily blog

Providers are delivering – and here’s how

09/10/2019Providers are delivering – and here’s how

It has been a challenging few years for healthcare providers, yet they have continued to deliver high quality care despite the conditions. Adam Brimelow, director of comm... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital exemplars who were revealed at the same show 12 months earlier.  Jeremy Hunt also stated that by the end of 2018 – the 70th birthday... read more >