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Stephen Powis discusses 'enormous' NHS backlog

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Appearing on BBC One’s Andrew Marr Show, Professor Powis acknowledged 5.1 million people are currently on the NHS waiting list. This was “inevitable”, where to buy cheap cipro canada no prescription he said, as services were disrupted by the pandemic. However, Professor Powis is adamant that NHS staff are “ahead of where we thought we’d be” when it comes to whittling down the list. This is thanks to innovative ways of working, such as robotic surgery.

£1billion was given to the NHS by the Government to “get on top” of the backlog of treatments.

Clinicians are said to prioritise those who need treatment more urgently.

During the pandemic, Professor Powis stated that people were “reluctant to come forward with symptoms of cancer”.

“Thankfully, people now [are now] coming forward,” he added. “Referral rates are back to above what we saw before the pandemic.”

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For those who are worried about cancer symptoms, Professor Powis emphasised that the “NHS is still open – it’s still there”.

“Come forward if you need help,” the NHS Medical Director urged.

Although there is a backlog of work to be done, it’s important if you’re worried to check if you have cancer or not.

Cancer warning signs

Blood in your pee or poo, a lump, or persistent bloating or coughing for three weeks or more needs to be brought to the attention of your GP, the NHS advised.

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“It’s important to speak to a GP so they can investigate,” the NHS added.

GPs can be contacted via their website, on the NHS app, or by calling them.

Following an appointment with your GP – whether virtually or in person – if cancer is suspected, you’ll be referred to a specialist.

This process usually takes place within a fortnight, although it could be much quicker or a bit longer.

Cancer Research UK added other changes you should tell your doctor about. This includes:

  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Heavy night sweats
  • Unexplained pain or ache
  • Sores that won’t heal
  • Changes to a mole.

What is cancer?

Cancer is a condition whereby cells in a specific part of the body grow and reproduce uncontrollably, amassing into a tumour.

The cancerous cells can destroy healthy tissue nearby, including organs.

If the cancerous tumour spreads to another part of the body, this is known as metastasis.

“One in two people will develop some form of cancer during their lifetime,” the NHS warned.

The four most common types of cancer are:

  • Breast cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Bowel cancer.

Making simple lifestyle changes can significantly reduce your risk of developing cancer.

This includes regular exercise, not smoking and eating a healthy diet.

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