May 22, 2024

Cancer patients have very little time

London. British GPs are sounding the alarm as overcrowded British GP practices are unable to adequately care for cancer patients. In particular, men with symptoms suggestive of prostate cancer are increasingly falling through the cautionary net.

In the UK, around 53,000 patients are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year, according to official figures from the London Department of Health. However, according to British oncologists, the number of unreported cases of undiagnosed disease is “significantly high”.

Patients should always visit their family doctor first

Problem: As the British public health system (National Health Service, NHS) operates according to the principle of primary doctor, the patient should first go to his family doctor to discuss his symptoms and concerns. However, as NHS GP surgeries have become overcrowded over the years, cancer patients, and prostate cancer patients in particular, are often left out.

According to a study called the NHS National Cancer Patient Survey, which asked around 60,000 British cancer patients about their experiences with the NHS, only one in three prostate cancer patients consulted their GP within the first three months of first noticing symptoms. Cancer. The main reason for this: difficulties in getting a relatively timely appointment with a family doctor.

There is a lack of time and a necessary diagnosis

Also: Most prostate patients had to consult a family doctor several times before cancer was diagnosed or the patient was referred to at least one clinic specialist for further tests. One in 20 prostate cancer patients had to visit their family doctor five or more times before getting help. For other types of cancer, according to Prostate Cancer UK, this happens much faster.

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If you talk to British family doctors about the topic of cancer prevention in general and prostate cancer prevention in particular, it quickly becomes clear that primary care doctors often don’t have the time or the necessary diagnoses to refer cancer patients immediately. According to Prostate Cancer UK, it claims the lives of “thousands” of patients every year. British patient associations are calling for urgent improvements to deliver preventative care. (branch)