Logic would dictate that if different hospitals within the same health authority area have amongst the longest and shortest waiting times for life-saving procedures, then the health authority should arrange for transfer of patients (and adjustment of contracts) from the long waiting list to the short.
Because of financial constraints, Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham Health Authority's response to this problem is to propose reducing cardiology contracts (and therefore operations) at King's College Hospital. Therefore, waiting times here will lengthen and patients will face the same risks and distress as they do elsewhere. King's patients enjoy high-quality cardiac services and waiting times which are comparable with those in most other western countries. The current financial crisis faced by the health authority potentially means that this model of appropriate cardiac care is to be eroded to the lowest common denominator.
Dr MARK J MONAGHAN
Care Group Director for Cardiology and Cardiothoracic Services
Dr DAVID JEWITT
Consultant Cardiologist and Executive Medical Director
King's College Hospital
London SE5Reuse content