Bowel Cancer: Health Services

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered at on 23 April 2024.

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Photo of Andrew Selous Andrew Selous The Second Church Estates Commissioner, The Second Church Estates Commissioner

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what her policy is on establishing a national policy for neurogenic bowel cancer; and what steps her Department is taking to ensure adequate care is available for people who need it.

Photo of Andrew Selous Andrew Selous The Second Church Estates Commissioner, The Second Church Estates Commissioner

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate she has made of the (a) cost to the NHS of lack of specialist bowel care for patients with neurogenic bowel disorders and (b) additional costs incurred by (i) diagnosis and treatment of pressure sores resulting from inadequate care and (ii) other secondary complications.

Photo of Andrew Stephenson Andrew Stephenson Assistant Whip, Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

The Department has no plans at present to establish a national policy on neurogenic bowel disorder. To help ensure that patients with neurogenic bowel receive timely and appropriate care, NHS England has developed a range of guidance, including its Excellence in Continence Care guidance. NHS England has also published a service specification for spinal cord injury services, which makes specific reference to bowel care. It outlines that patients with spinal injury should be provided with advice and care by specialist nursing staff in specialist fields, including in the field of bladder and bowel management. In addition, National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidelines on faecal incontinence set out the care that patients with neurogenic bowel should receive, including a neurological bowel management programme.

No estimate has been made of the cost to the National Health Service of a lack of specialist bowel care for patients with neurogenic bowel disorders. Nor has an estimate been made of the costs incurred by the diagnosis and treatment of pressure sores, resulting from inadequate care and other secondary complications.

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