Yesterday we heard the news that Steve Brine, the Under Secretary of State for Public Health and Primary Care resigned. Responsibilities in the role include prevention and early intervention, the public health system and cancer.
Ali Stunt, CEO and founder of Pancreatic Cancer Action comments:
What does this mean for patients?
The resignation of a minister will not immediately impact patients. Ministers are responsible for policy and whoever takes over from Steve Brine will have their own passions and causes they are interested in. However, they will still be responsible for cancer under their title as Public Health Minister and the governments Long Term Plan for the NHS will remain unchanged, meaning they will need to be involved in policy creation which supports the plan.
Concerns over Brexit
Steve Brine MP resigned from the government over Brexit, an issue that clearly has caused some uncertainty. Health care staff and patients are concerned about the possible impact of no deal at the end of the Brexit negotiations on their medications and the ability for the health service to run effectively.
The government has taken advice from multiple sources regarding risks of a no deal Brexit and has published reports for NHS providers for stockpiling in case of a no deal Brexit in April (in case of border delays or issues importing some medications). This should prevent the impact of no deal being felt by patients.
The situation remains very changeable and MPs in parliament have previously voted to prevent no deal being carried out, through law if necessary. This week another series of votes will be held to try to break the current Brexit deadlock and find a way MPs agree on.
There will be a replacement of the role, however, we don’t know who or when. Nobody knows what is going to happen next, however, rest assured that once we know who will replace him, we will reach out to make sure the issues surrounding pancreatic cancer are a priority.
Whatever happens in the coming days and weeks, patients should be reassured that plans are in place to avoid disruption to their treatments and medicines.
If anyone has any worries or concerns, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us. We will always try our best to help in any way we can. Please e-mail [email protected] or call 0303 040 1770.