A DOCTOR and patients of an Ilkeston surgery have hit out at cuts that will mean people needing minor operations will have to go to hospital rather than receive the treatment locally.
Littlewick Medical Centre on Nottingham Road has the facilities to carry out minor surgical procedures in house rather than referring patients to hospitals where they could face lengthy waits but new cost cutting measures will mean the number of minor operations will have to be slashed.
Primary Care Trust cuts want to see a 30 per cent reduction in the number of procedures carried out at local level. Doctors and patients disagree and want to see the decision overturned.
Partner at the surgery, Dr Paul Travell, said: “This is not something we support or want to happen but we have no choice but to reduce services for now.
“We currently perform about 400 procedures at the centre a year, things like removing cysts or skin lesions, we will have to cut this down to about 130 procedures.
“This means we will have to refer more patients to hospitals which will inevitably mean longer waiting lists in surgery and at hospitals.
“It will also mean patients will have to travel and pay to park when they need one of these procedures.
“I’d like to continue offering the procedures at Littlewick, we have the skills and facilities too and it’s much more convenient for people.”
A spokesman for Derby and Derbyshire PCT said: “The NHS in Derbyshire has a responsibility to ensure that its resources are used wisely to provide the best possible care for all its patients.
“The Procedures of Clinical Limited Value (PLCV) policy introduced in April last year has successfully achieved significant savings of £1.37m for NHS Derby City and £757,000 for NHS Derbyshire County (from August 2010 to March 2011).
“Anticipated savings for the new financial year, which will be the full 12 months, are £2.055m for NHS Derby City and £1.355m for NHS Derbyshire County. The PLCV policy has now been reviewed for clarity, and a number of procedures have been added. These are mostly procedures which were already subject to the commissioning process and they have been included to ensure the policy is as clear as possible.”