NHS treatments for piles and cataracts facing cutbacks in St Helens

Article from The Liverpool Echo, 6 July 2017

NHS treatment for piles, cataracts, hairloss and laser tattoo removal could be slashed in St Helens.

The latest cutbacks to public health services in the area comes as health chiefs fight to plug a £12.5 million black hole.

Cash-strapped NHS bosses unveiled a package of proposed cuts at the end of last year which included banning women under 38 from using NHS fertility services, suspending all non-urgent hospital referrals between October and January, and refusing to pay for prescriptions for medicines that are routinely sold in supermarkets.

St Helens Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) say these latest treatments are facing cutbacks because operations are “being carried out with little or no difference to the patient”.

A spokesman for the CCG said: “This is putting a huge strain on the NHS. To stop this from happening we are reviewing over 100 policies and treatments. This will ensure NHS resources are being used in the best possible way.”

As part of the ongoing review to services the NHS provide in the area seven CCG’s have joined together including Liverpool, South Sefton, St Helens, Knowsley, Halton, Southport and Formby and Warrington to discuss what is best for each district.

Treatments will be cut over the next 12 months and the St Helens CCG say people will have a chance to comment on what is happening before anything is changed.