More Medical Tests To Be Provided On The Islands

hospital 4Plans to provide more medical services in Scilly appear to be moving a step closer.

GPs at St Mary’s Health Centre will soon be getting a blood testing system that means they can make a faster diagnosis of problems, without having to send samples to the mainland or fly patients to hospital for testing.

Dr John Garman said this will allow the medical team here on the islands to rule out heart attacks and blood clots, as well as test for kidney function and infections.

John says this will have huge benefits for patients and is great news for the islands. At the moment, if doctors suspect a serious medical condition, they often have no choice but to call out a helicopter to evacuate patients to Treliske.

Blood testing on the islands means they’ll be able to look after more people here, close to their homes, and will save money on transfers.

The new Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group will purchase the machine, and the consumables to run it for a year.

But Alison Roberts-Davis from KCCG told councillors at last week’s Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee that working out who should pay for the kit has been a problem because of the unique way that medical services are delivered in Scilly.

On the mainland, this sort of testing would be done in an urgent care setting, like Treliske. But here, it’ll be housed in St Mary’s hospital, which is run by another trust, Peninsula Community Health, and operated by GPs.

In the end, said Alison, they just felt it was important to get the testing up and running and worry about who’ll pay for it later.

In addition to the new blood testing system, the Hospital League of Friends has purchased a machine to monitor patients on warfarin treatment and the Health Centre has also acquired a cholesterol test kit as part of their ongoing health check programme.

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