Millions lost on unnecessary surgical procedures

The NHS could save tens of millions of pounds by restricting access to tonsillectomy, hysterectomy and caesarean section, according to the Association of Directors of Public Health.

Dr Tim Crayford, president of the Association, today addressed the New Health Network Conference and called for NICE to urgently issue guidance.

Dr Crayford said: ‘All of these operations have value in certain circumstances, but a mixture of custom and resistance to change has created a new type of clinical waste.’

There is relatively little clinical value in tonsillectomy, yet the NHS spends roughly £40 million a year, said Dr Crayford.

Over £100 million is spent each year on hysterectomy. However, chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, has highlighted that newer treatments are available which are just as effective as hysterectomy in many cases. ‘The NHS needs to ensure that hysterectomy is offered when non-surgical alternatives have been considered.’

Dr Crayford recognised that Caesarean section was frequently a life-saving procedure, but he felt that £50 million additional cost suggested we are doing ‘more than is necessary.’

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

Most GP care should be face-to-face post-COVID, says RCGP

Most GP care should be face-to-face post-COVID, says RCGP

General practice faces a 'rebalancing' between face-to-face and remote consultations...

GP funding formula needs radical overhaul, report warns

GP funding formula needs radical overhaul, report warns

General practice needs more investment and a radical overhaul of its funding formula...

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

GPonline provides an overview of the key guidance relating to coronavirus, including...

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...

How to avoid burnout as a doctor

How to avoid burnout as a doctor

Dr Patrice Baptiste recently suffered from burnout, here she offers some practical...

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

UK COVID-19 vaccination programme tracker

GPs across the UK are playing a leading role in the largest-ever NHS vaccination...