RCSEd welcomes report from the Health and Social Care Select Committee on cancer and shares concerns raised on NHS recruitment and retention crisis

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06 Apr 2022

The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh welcomes the report of the Health and Social Care Select Committee on cancer and shares the concern raised that the NHS’s ongoing recruitment and retention crisis is jeopardising the early diagnosis of cancer that is so crucial to improving survival rates.

Professor Mike Griffin OBE - who gave evidence to the Committee – said:

“as most cancers require surgery as part of their treatment, it is vital that patients are diagnosed and operated on as soon as possible. We know that the disruption to cancer services during the pandemic will contribute to a significant increase in cancer mortality over the coming months and years.    The unprecedented backlog of surgery cases puts many at further risk. It is imperative that workforce gaps are addressed as a priority.

During my evidence to the committee I also emphasised the importance of having more standalone elective care sites to better ringfence cancer surgery. I am pleased to see the committee recommending that the Government and NHS England should review the organisation of cancer surgery with a specific focus on whether more specialist hospitals should be established.

As I also pointed out however, these standalone units could not currently be staffed, and it remains the case that the workforce shortage is the biggest threat currently to our NHS, posing a risk to patient safety and staff wellbeing alike.”



About The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh

RCSEd was first incorporated as the Barber Surgeons of Edinburgh in 1505, and is based in Edinburgh and Birmingham. It is one of the oldest surgical corporations in the world with a worldwide membership of almost 29,000. The majority of our members practice across the UK, with over 15,000 professionals based in Scotland, England and Wales. The College also has a significant global presence with 11,000 members in over 100 countries worldwide. 

The College promotes the highest standards of surgical and dental practice through education, training and examinations, its liaison with external medical bodies and representation of the modern surgical and dental workforce. It is also home to the UK’s only Faculty of Surgical Trainers, open to all those with an interest in surgical training regardless of College affiliation.

Find RCSEd here www.rcsed.ac.uk, on Twitter www.twitter.com/RCSEd, on Facebook www.facebook.com/rcsed and Instagram https://www.instagram.com/RCSEd/


Issued by tigerbond on behalf of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. For further information, please contact eddie.boyd@tigerbond.com or 07713314502.   

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