Høie on wait times for cancer patients: – Unacceptable

Health Minister Bent Høie New TreatmentNorwegian Minister of Health, Bent Høie (Conservatives). Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB scanpix

Minister of Health Bent Høie (H) reacts on the fact that cancer patients must wait for months for X-rays at Oslo University Hospital (OUS). He asks the hospital to clean up their act.

“It is unacceptable that cancer patients must wait for months to get the necessary x-rays,” says Høie to NTB.

According to figures from the hospital, several hundred patients are queuing up to get advanced X-rays such as CT or MRI at the Radiumhospitalet and Rikshospitalet.

The pictures are needed to know if the treatment has the desired effect or whether the cancer has spread.

“I expect that the Oslo University Hospital will clean up this, either by increasing its own capacity or by purchasing the capacity at private facilities. The Government has introduced a package of programs for cancer precisely to ensure more predictability and continuity of treatment,” says the Minister of Health.

The problems apply primarily to cancer patients with proven spreads and patients to be checked for possible recurrence.

“We have reported about this time and again, but little happens. It is very frustrating,” says section leader Erik Løkkeik at section for breast cancer at OUS.

Clinic manager at the radiology department Paulina Due-Tønnessen acknowledges that the clinic has waiting lists for CT and MR.

“We very much regret this, and it is not something we are happy with at all,” she says.

The clinic director points out that they have increased the capacity for the number of CT and MRI examinations, the last few years, but that this has not been enough to remove more patients with more controlled examinations than before.

“Of course we do everything we can to open every night, but in the end there are not enough resources,” she says.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today

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