Accelerating recovery of diagnostic services with £8million investment
Following a successful bid, we are pleased to confirm that local NHS trusts are taking part in a national programme to help the NHS further accelerate diagnostic activity and recover services from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic as quickly as possible.
Our colleagues across NHS services are working hard to recover services affected by the pandemic, now the vaccine programme has helped to significantly reduce the number of Covid patients needing care.
Throughout the pandemic the NHS has continued to be there for people and services have restored to normal rates of activity. Figures show that April 2019 to June 2019 the NHS locally ran 133,408 tests compared to 132,218 for the same period this year.
In the last 12 months nearly half a million (487,111) diagnostic tests have been carried out.
But we all know that waiting lists are still higher than we would like for our patients, and the impact of the pandemic is still being felt on these and other services, particularly in terms of staffing and Infection Prevention Control measures.
Our diagnostic recovery plan will see the money being used to invest in new equipment such as CT and MRI Scanners and to fund extra staff sessions to ensure we can deliver around 46,000 new tests in the community.
Mr Jonathan Fellows, Chair Designate Black Country Integrated Care System: “Thanks to the hard work and dedication of our staff, and the success of the vaccine programme, in recent months we have been able to provide far more planned care for people with non-COVID concerns than we were able to during the first wave of the pandemic.
“The mission now is to increase this activity further, ensuring that as many people as possible get the tests and treatment they need, prioritising those with the most urgent clinical need, addressing the longest waiters, and being mindful of the health inequalities COVID-19 highlighted.”
Diane Wake, Elective Care Lead for the Black Country and West Birmingham: “I recognise how important it is to get diagnostic tests done as quickly as possible and right now too many people are waiting longer than we would like. The funding will be used locally to add capacity to our diagnostic centres in Cannock and across Dudley meaning that thousands of local people will be able to get a test sooner than they otherwise might.
“As an early adopter site we will also help provide learning for the whole country on how to continue the momentum on recovery further in a resilient way for both our staff and other services.”