New health guidelines could cost lives, warns Derek

West Cornwall MP Derek Thomas has warned ministers that the implementation of new NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guidelines could result in many hundreds of extra deaths.

As the Chair of the APPG on Vascular and Venous Disease, Mr Thomas highlighted the draft NICE guidelines on the treatment of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA) in a question to Steve Brine MP, Minister for Public Health and Primary Care.

“Some 1,500 and 2,000 lives a year that have been saved as a result of the NHS AAA Screening programme,” said Mr Thomas.

“If these draft recommendations are adopted, a patient is likely to have an aneurysm erupt before treatment and 80% of patients are then likely to die.”

After Mr Thomas pressed the Minister to “ask NICE to look carefully at the unintended consequences of these draft recommendation”, Mr Brine said he would “look carefully at the issues”.

Mr Thomas has since written to Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt setting out in full the detail and the likely consequence of this move.