GP expands endoscopy service as demand rises

A practice that set up its own endoscopy service has more than doubled capacity as demand grows for community cancer diagnostics.

Dr Cohen said setting up the service took ‘a lot of bottle and hard work'
Dr Cohen said setting up the service took ‘a lot of bottle and hard work'

The service, run by Prime Endoscopy Bristol and hosted by Westbury-on-Trym Primary Care Centre in Bristol, will now open its community gastroenterology unit on five days a week.

The unit has offered GPs direct access to non-urgent flexible sigmoidoscopy and colonoscopy since 2010 when it began by offering sessions on two days per week. The service is a collaboration with Prime Diagnostics, a private company that provides community-based direct-access diagnostics across England.

Since January 2012, the unit has performed 285 colonoscopies and 616 flexible sigmoidoscopies, detecting 12 new cases of colorectal cancer.


Dr Cohen outside his practice

GP Dr Mike Cohen, a partner in the practice, said establishing the service took ‘a lot of bottle and hard work’, and that locating the service in primary care gives GPs confidence when referring.

‘It is a service for GPs and their patients, run by GPs,’ he said. ‘All patients are discharged with a management plan. This is the added value of our service and it is provided below the secondary care tariff.’

Dr Cohen hopes the service can meet some of the rising demand expected when flexible sigmoidoscopy is added to the national bowel cancer screening programme in 2013/14.
But local demand for endoscopy services still far outstrips supply despite his service’s expansion, and by 2013/14 his service may be at full capacity he said.

Dr Cohen said increasing national diagnostic capacity further would be a ‘real challenge’ for the NHS.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

The healthcare crisis in Myanmar - how UK GPs can help

The healthcare crisis in Myanmar - how UK GPs can help

Dr Jim Brockbank from Myanmar UK GP Health Action provides an update on how the military...

GPs warn of 'open floodgates' as 84% say e-consultations have driven up workload

GPs warn of 'open floodgates' as 84% say e-consultations have driven up workload

More than four fifths of GPs say e-consultation systems adopted in the pandemic have...

Map: Which CCGs have the highest COVID-19 vaccine coverage?

Map: Which CCGs have the highest COVID-19 vaccine coverage?

Tens of millions of COVID-19 jabs have been administered across England, but how...

Podcast: Greener practice, sharing patient data and additional roles

Podcast: Greener practice, sharing patient data and additional roles

In this episode we look at data extraction from GP records, ask whether the additional...

Red flag symptoms: Loss of consciousness

Red flag symptoms: Loss of consciousness

Red flag symptoms to look out for in presentations of loss of consciousness, including...

£20m fund to speed up second jabs as CCGs told to limit pressure on practices

£20m fund to speed up second jabs as CCGs told to limit pressure on practices

NHS England has announced £20m in funding to help local COVID-19 vaccination sites...