Ver­ruca and wart pa­tients forced out of GP surg­eries

The Scotsman - - Brexit -

are caused by the hu­man pa­pil­lo­mavirus in­fec­tion.

Cryother­apy was used to treat other con­di­tions in­clud­ing ac­tinic ker­ato­sis, Bowen’s dis­ease and other skin le­sions.

Dr Ma­caulay, who prac­ticed at Ash­grove Med­i­cal Cen­tre, in Black­burn, West Loth­ian, added: “Peo­ple’s lives are not at risk but things like warts or ver­ru­cas are un­pleas­ant and if you can help re­move them as a GP and save the pa­tient a long jour­ney, that’s a ser­vice.

“The der­ma­tol­o­gists still have ac­cess to liq­uid ni­tro­gen so it’s not as if they’ve said there is no use for cryother­apy and no­body needs that treat­ment any more.

“What this de­ci­sion means is that it will take for­ever for a pa­tient to re­ceive cryother­apy treat­ment whereas be­fore GPS could do it straight away. The bur­den is now placed on der­ma­tol­ogy de­part­ments that al­ready had long wait­ing times.”

NHS Loth­ian stopped sup­ply­ing prac­tices with liq­uid ni­tro­gen in 2012 – and NHS Scot­land has just im­ple­mented the move across all 14 of the coun­try’s NHS Trusts.

Prac­tices in Scot­land’s big­gest NHS Trust Greater Glas­gow and Clyde have re­cently been is­su­ing let­ters to pa­tients at­tend­ing their prac­tice in­form­ing them cryother­apy is no longer avail­able.

It is un­der­stood that health and safety rules mean flasks of liq­uid ni­tro­gen can no longer be de­liv­ered by car to avoid any risk of spillage that could mean a driver suf­fer­ing as­phyxia, dam­age to lungs or cold burns.

It was also ruled that stor­age

0 Crit­ics to the with­drawal of the ther­apy point to He­ston Blu­men­thal’s use of liq­uid ni­tro­gen on TV

fa­cil­i­ties at health cen­tres no longer com­plied with ven­ti­la­tion re­quire­ments and did not have ap­pro­pri­ate alarm sys­tems.

Some GPS are pay­ing for pri­vate con­trac­tors to con­tinue cryother­apy ser­vices – but it is no longer be­ing sup­plied to surg­eries by NHS Scot­land.

Scot­tish Labour’s Health spokesper­son Mon­ica Len­non MSP said: “If this is a cost­cut­ting ex­er­cise it is a fur­ther sign of the chal­lenges fac­ing our NHS un­der the SNP and it needs to be fixed.”

A Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment spokesper­son said: “The lat­est ev­i­dence in­di­cates that a sep­a­rate ser­vice for mi­nor surgery for warts and ver­ruca is no longer clin­i­cally rec­om­mended.”

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