50% of PCT's restricting access to cataract surgery

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There appears to be differing policies throughout the country.  A programme of work is in place for the Royal College of Surgeons in an attempt to define appropriate access thresholds in a number of areas for treatment.  It is hoped by June that 28 pieces of guidance will have being produced.

Sir Keogh says that "if we can get the surgeons and commissioners into the same place the thresholds of referrals, I think we will not only improve the quality of care but will save a considerable amount of money". 

This article also highlighted the differences across the country with other treatments including hip replacements.  It appears that the bulk of policies used by PCTs haven't used the best evidence available in order to ration the care in relation to various services. 

I do agree that there needs to be consensus across the country about what services are offered.  You should know that wherever you go in the country, the services that you can access will be the same. 

Patricia Wakeford


Clinical Negligence team

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