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DoH: Oncology emergency services 'needed at every hospital'

21st August 2009

Hospital accident and emergency departments need to offer acute oncology services to ensure the correct treatment for cancer patients, according to the Department of Health (DoH).

Health minister Ann Keen has urged NHS hospitals to improve the quality and safety of treatment for those undergoing chemotherapy.

The recommendation is included in a new report published by the National Chemotherapy Advisory Group (NCAG), which calls for emergency oncology services to quickly identify those suffering side effects of chemotherapy.

Ms Keen said: 'All cancer treatment in Britain has improved vastly in recent years due to the excellent progress the NHS has made in improving cancer outcomes and services for patients.

'The challenge now is to keep up this momentum and we will now work with the NHS to implement the recommendations.'

Claims were recently made in the US that many NHS patients do not have access to an oncologist.

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