United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust’s 14 week public consultation into the future of its nuclear medicine service has now closed. We would like to thank everyone who has taken part in the consultation and have taken the time to give their views, it is invaluable in how we run our services.
Nuclear medicine is a specialist imaging technique involving the administration of radioactive substances (called radiopharmaceuticals) in the diagnosis and treatment of disease.
There are over 20 different tests that nuclear medicine can perform and they look at conditions as diverse as Parkinson’s disease to delayed gastric emptying. In United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT) hospitals, the most common tests performed are bone scans and heart scans.
The service is currently provided from three hospitals in Lincolnshire: Lincoln County Hospital, Grantham and District Hospital and Pilgrim Hospital, Boston. The service sees around 2,500 patients per year for very specialist tests.
The service has long faced challenges around staffing, aging equipment and sustainability, and therefore it has been deemed unsustainable in its current format.
The consultation has been launched on identified options to reduce the number of hospital sites that the service could be delivered from in future. These options have been developed by hospital clinicians, and shaped by patient representatives.
The options are:
- Option 1: Centralisation of the service at Lincoln
- Option 2: Centralisation of the service at two sites – Lincoln and Pilgrim
Staff, patients and the public of Lincolnshire were invited to give their views as part of this consultation, ahead of a decision being made about the future of the service later this year. The consultation ran from Monday 28 February to Monday 6 June and included digital and in-person engagement events with all stakeholders as well as paper and on-line surveys. We have received over 900 surveys and have spoken to over 50 stakeholders throughout the duration of the consultation and we would like to thank everybody for their invaluable feedback.
A paper that takes into account all the feedback from the events, meetings and surveys will now be prepared and then shared with the ULHT board for their consideration and any decisions on future implementation.