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

The original Moderna COVID-19 vaccine

First COVID-19 vaccine to target Omicron variant approved for use in UK

The MHRA has approved an updated version of the Moderna vaccine that targets both...

Ballot box

Majority of GPs back taking industrial action in the coming year, poll suggests

The majority of GPs support taking industrial action in the coming 12 months to push...

RCGP sign

NHS winter plan does not provide enough support for GPs, warns RCGP

NHS England's winter plan does not include enough measures to support general practice...

NHS sign

Plans to recruit 1,000 new link workers to support GP practices this winter

NHS England has set out plans to recruit an additional 1,000 social prescribing link...

BMA House

BMA prepares to ballot junior doctors on industrial action

Junior doctors will be balloted over industrial action if the government does not...

Typing on a laptop

NHS 111 systems could be offline until next week following cyber attack

NHS 111 systems could be offline until next week following the cyber attack on a...