Letter: Health MP defends cancer test wait as 'normal'

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I HAVE every sympathy with Ethel Sanders who faces a short wait for her biopsy at Harold Wood Hospital ('Torture of long wait for cancer test', 14 March).

Clearly, this is a worrying time for Mrs Sanders, but her consultant did see her just three working days after she visited her GP. The consultant decided that Mrs Sanders needed a biopsy within the normal waiting period of one to four weeks. I understand that she is on an admissions list and has an appointment within three weeks of first seeing the consultant.

Your story claimed that a lack of funds contributed to her wait. This is not the case. Clinicians decide priority, not administrators. There is no question of financial constraints resulting in treatment delays for patients classified as urgent by doctors or consultants.

Tom Sackville MP

Parliamentary Under-Secretary

of State for Health

London W1