NHS to cut millions of operations to save money

A top doctor has warned that the NHS plans to axe treatments in order to make savings of £20 billion. This will result in millions of patients missing out on surgery.

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In a bid to achieve "wholesale reductions in budgets", low value operations such as hernias, joint replacements, ear and nose procedures, varicose veins and cataract surgery could lose funding and therefore be banned.

Dr Mark Porter, chairman of the British Medical Association's consultants committee, said that such a ban is a bad move by the NHS since many patients who could benefit from these operations could lose out.

He said: "Already NHS commissioners are drawing up lists of health interventions that must be decommissioned. Cut. Stopped. Not done any more. These lists are clothed in the language of evidence but they represent target reductions based on cost and volume, sometimes ignoring the potential benefit to individual patients."

Dr Porter claimed that hospital doctors would stand up for patients and be opposed to the cuts.

A review of clinical guidelines will be completed by the end of the year that will assess which treatments are being overused and where savings could be made.

A spokesman for the Department of Health said: "Savings will be implemented in a way that does not affect the quality of services and all savings will be reinvested back in the NHS."

What do you think? Is it right for the NHS to be banning any operations at all? Leave a comment and share your thoughts.