NICE under fire for skin cancer review

The British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) has criticised NICE after it announced that it will review its skin cancer guidance.

In April, a meeting was chaired by cancer czar Professor Mike Richards which involved the RCGP, the BMA and BAD.

At the meeting, concerns were raised that the guidance was restricting GPs from performing minor surgery without support from dermatologists.

Dr Mark Goodfield, chairman of BAD, said: ‘We are very disappointed with this decision since we believed that an earlier meeting between all interested parties had reached agreement.

‘The position of GP representatives seems to have changed since the meeting.

‘This decision seems to be politically driven, which is concerning given that NICE is supposed to respond to evidence-based medicine, and as such this appears to contravene the purpose and spirit of the institute. It is hard to see how this is for the benefit of patients.'

Dr Fergus Macbeth, director of the centre for clinical practice at NICE, said: ‘We have listened to the concerns of our stakeholders about the difficulty of implementing the recommendations in the guidance around the diagnosis and removal of low-risk basal cell carcinomas (BCCs) in primary care.

‘What the expert group will specifically consider are the recommendations in the NICE guidance about the diagnosis and removal of low risk BCCs in primary care.'

  • Does NICE's skin cancer guidance need review?


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