NHS Highland has received support to address the needs of bowel cancer patients and prevent delays in their care. The health board faced challenges in recruiting a permanent colorectal consultant oncologist or securing locum cover, resulting in the suspension of treatment for some patients.
To mitigate this situation, NHS Highland has reached an arrangement with NHS Lothian, Tayside, and Grampian. The aim is to reduce the necessity for patients to travel by implementing online consultations.
The recruitment difficulties experienced by NHS Highland are linked to a national shortage of cancer specialists. The new setup, scheduled to go live from July 3rd, is supported by the health boards and the Scottish government.
NHS Highland is committed to minimizing patient travel for treatment and is working diligently to resume its colorectal oncology service in a timely manner, recognizing the inconvenience caused to patients.
To prevent care delays for bowel cancer patients, NHS Highland has obtained support from three health boards.
Due to the inability to hire a permanent colorectal consultant oncologist or secure locum cover, NHS Highland has faced treatment suspensions for certain individuals.
In an effort to alleviate the situation, NHS Highland has reached an agreement with NHS Lothian, Tayside, and Grampian.
NHS Highland has stated that online consultations should minimize the need for most patients to travel to other board areas.
The recruitment challenges faced by the health board are attributed to a nationwide shortage of cancer specialists, according to NHS Highland.
NHS Highland encompasses a vast geographical region, encompassing Argyll, Caithness, Sutherland, and the Isle of Skye.
With the support of the health boards and the Scottish government, the new arrangement, as confirmed by Medical Director Dr. Boyd Peters, will become operational from July 3rd.
Dr. Boyd Peters emphasized that every possible effort will be made to minimize the necessity for patients to travel for treatment.
Dr. Peters expressed regret for the inconvenience caused to patients and assured that swift action will be taken to restore the colorectal oncology service in Highland.
Source : bbc.com