View Full Version : Cancer care in Britain.

5th Feb 2009, 01:37
Where are we getting it wrong?

The bit before the patient see's the doctor?

The bit where the doctor refers to the specialist?

The bit where the specialist asks for an investigation?

The bit where the result gets back to the specialist?

The bit where the specialist does something?

The bit where the patient recovers/dies?

And is everyone talking to one another along the way?

I don't think we're getting it right. And I think we should.

Howard Hughes
5th Feb 2009, 02:14
Where are we getting it wrong?

The bit before the patient see's the doctor?

I would say in most cases this is where we are getting it wrong, the large majority of cancers can be treated when diagnosed early enough!

galaxy flyer
5th Feb 2009, 02:22
Welcome to socialized medicine :} OTOH, a friend of mine here in the US got triple bypass heart surgery 18 hours after being on the stress test treadmill.

You can't get more than you pay for.


5th Feb 2009, 07:02
You can't get more than you pay for.
Correct. And the Brits pay plenty by way of taxes for their medical care, therefore they should get a better deal.

Where are we getting it wrong?
Probably the bit before the patient sees the doctor. Too many people adopt the "ah, it's probably nothing" attitude or here in Oz it would be the "she'll be right" attitude and delay for too long before grudgingly going along to get the problem dealt with.

18 hours, galaxy flyer? Friend of mine had a similar problem, collapsed at home and was operated on within five hours ... within the public health system.

5th Feb 2009, 07:17
I hate these threads.

heated ice detector
5th Feb 2009, 10:30
May have to get used to it,
statistics I heard a few years ago was that currently one in three are affected by cancer directly or indirectly and within ten years it will be one in two,
where's my coffee enema?

PPRuNe Radar
5th Feb 2009, 10:38
It is probably best answered by someone who has actual experience of the system.

Read the thread by Say Again Slowly and see what he thinks.

B*gger I've Got Cancer (http://www.pprune.org/jet-blast/291990-b-gger-ive-got-cancer.html)

5th Feb 2009, 12:40
My own, recent, personal NHS experience, about 4 months ago.

Wednesday. Went to see GP re mildly embarrassing problem (piles). Doc does examination and takes blood sample.
Friday. Get phone call from doc. Blood sample rsults just back and shows marginally high PSA level (possible sign of prostate cancer). Nothing showed in exam and not trerribly high but recommends he books me in with a specialist, to make sure.
Tuesday. Seen by specialist. No apparent problem (thanks be to whichever Deity responsible) but "we'll keep an eye on the situation".

Since then I've had a three month follow-up check (PSA normal by now) and just got another appointment for the next follow-up.

I can't complain at that service.

Another one was my son-in-law where my daughter noticed a dark patch on his back. Within 4 days he had been seen by GP and Specialist and had a milinoma removed. He's also ok and very satisfied with the service.

5th Feb 2009, 20:17
Yeh, apologies, my mate phoned me last night to confirm his (young) partners death from cancer. She was let down, badly, by one of the steps in the journey.

I'm a bit frustrated, which is why I made the post- probably not the best use of this forum, but cathartic to mouth of all the same.

I'm in the "system" myself, (as a professional),and am aware of the user experiences (including SAS's), and I'm proud to say I was part of the system that plugged the gaps.

Which is why I'm a bit piss*ed off when it lets someone down.

Nearly There
5th Feb 2009, 21:16
Im thankful of the level of service recieved in the UK, my brother on Monday night had a severe headache and loss of vision in his left eye, the mrs took him to hospital, they performed an MRI scan within a couple of hours..by 5am the next morning he had been in surgery and had a tumour removed from the petuitry gland at the base of the brain, the very next day he was out of intensive care and as I type is upright in bed on a ward flirting with the nurses!

My farther on moving house last year changed GP, as the norm they gave him a medical, the PSA number was quite high, turned out he had prostate cancer, after a brief spell of radiotherapy, the PSA number has dropped to near normal levels, and he is back to his normal self, apart from tablets daily to keep things at bay.

Im not a religious chap, but thank god for the speed and quality of the NHS when it is realy needed, and get pi55ed when I see drunken thugs on TV punching nurses and doctors in A&E on a friday and saturday night, (but I guess thats for another thread) when I have the utmost respect for these very people who have kept my father and brother alive and kicking.:D

5th Feb 2009, 22:32
I'm a bit frustrated, which is why I made the post- probably not the best use of this forum, but cathartic to mouth of all the same.J&E. There you are wrong, one of the best uses of this forum I can think of. As it says in the rules 'like leaning on the bar having a bitch about life'. (and if it doesn't it should).

While the system generally seems to work pretty well these days things do, and always will, go wrong. The best we can do then is identify what went wrong and try to prevent it happening again (and, from personal experience, the thing that seems to go wrong most often is the bit before the patient sees the doctor, leaving it too late. A tricky one to fix).