Exclusive: Life-saving operations delayed in capital as caseload tops 57,000 for Christmas Day shuffle fallout as other parts of UK brace
The Observer will reveal that NHS bosses are set to postpone urgent operations across London, which may mean that cancer patients have to wait months for life-saving surgery.
The drastic action is taken into account by NHS England bosses because hospitals around the capital are overwhelmed with individuals that are very sick with Covid-19.
The operations that are likely to be cancelled, known as “priority two” procedures, primarily include cancer operations where patients require surgery within four weeks, specialists have agreed.
Any delay may cause the tumor to develop, spread the disease, or both, decreasing the likelihood of survival for patients.
Health care administrators and cancer specialists fear that if surgery is delayed for an uncertain period of time, the cancer of patients may worsen or even become inoperable.
These are surgeries that are curative if performed within four weeks, but they might not be as successful if you wait longer,’ said a senior London NHS official. “When they are rebooked, how it impacts the welfare of patients depends.
Delaying cancer surgery may lead to the growth or spread of the tumor, and the effect is worse.
The condition has occurred because intensive care beds are running out of London hospitals and do not conduct types of cancer operations needing an ICU bed where the patient can recover.
The second most critical of the four types of surgery that the NHS conducts are these surgeries. Priority 4 cases are elective surgeries that could be deferred for more than 3 months; priority 3 surgeries should be performed within 3 months; priority 2 surgeries should be performed within 28 days. Only emergency operations that need to be carried out within 24 or 72 hours are deemed to be more urgent.
“Londoners continue to receive urgent cancer treatment and surgery. Urgent cancer surgery will not be cancelled in London.”
The decision came as another 57,725 Covid-19 cases were registered in the UK, reaching 50,000 for the fifth consecutive day.
Yesterday, a further 445 deaths were also reported.
To protect their own health, Blood Cancer UK advised worried parents to seriously consider sending their children to school if they live in an area with a high infection rate. “No parent with blood cancer should feel pressured to send their children to school in the next few weeks if they think the right thing for their family is to keep them away,” the organization said.
Five hospitals had to divert emergency patients to other hospitals on Saturday because their A&E units were too overwhelmed, in another indication of the extreme pressure on the NHS in the capital.
Senior doctors and hospital chiefs, meanwhile, warn that because of the number of covid cases needing hospital treatment, the NHS is in danger of being “stretched to the limit,” with widespread closures of usual care.
They are worried that inter-household mixing, which was allowed on Christmas Day in some parts of the United Kingdom, could lead to a further rise in the already drastic number of people becoming very ill. Since an increase in infections due to household mixing at Christmas is only now becoming evident, it is clear that the situation could escalate over the next 10-21 days as the effects of Christmas and News
“In the form of surgery and clinics, the NHS may well reach a “maxed out” stage, which will manifest itself in the cancellation of all non-acute work, leading to further chaos for those waiting for treatment.” The crisis is so extreme that the suspension of non-clinical care may last until Easter, he added.
Nicki Credland, president of the British Association of Critical Care Nurses, said, “Ahead of Covid, some hospitals operate at up to 200 percent of their capacity, putting enormous pressure on employees. We have seen the impact of the ver.”