Scottish cancer strategy may miss the mark due to radiologist shortage

The National Health Service (NHS) has hired more consultant radiologists in recent years, but the Scottish government’s five-year cancer strategy is in danger of not meeting its goals by March 2021 due to continued staffing shortages.

"We recognize there can be challenges in recruiting the right specialist staff for some services,” government spokesperson told the BBC. “That's why the Scottish Cancer Taskforce is feeding into the development of the Scottish government Integrated Workforce Plan, which aims to address workforce needs across Scotland.”

Since the plan’s implementation in 2016, a total of 47 out of 54 of the strategy’s objectives have been completed or “are on track.” 

"A great deal of progress has been made in the implementation of the strategy and we're really pleased to see the Scottish government is on course to meet its £100 million (approximately $113 million) funding commitment,” said Gregor McNie, head of external affairs in Scotland for Cancer Research UK. 

“However, significant staffing shortages remain a serious concern and the Scottish government must now plan and deliver for a fully resourced Scottish cancer workforce both now and in the future,” McNie said.

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