Andrew Smith MP

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Andrew backs calls for a £4m specialist cancer centre in Oxford

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Andrew Smith MP has called on NHS England to support a planned £4m specialist cancer centre in Oxford.

At a recent visit to Nuffield Health, who are based at the Manor Hospital in Headington, Andrew was briefed on plans for a centre for gamma knife radiation which would bring a much-needed service to Oxfordshire, allowing 150 local patients to be treated here in Oxford and not having to travel as far away as Sheffield.

Unfortunately this plan was put on hold earlier this year as NHS England is currently conducting a review into treatments like gamma knife radiation, to determine whether there is capacity and clinical need.

Andrew said: "Gamma knife radiation is a very sophisticated way of focusing radiotherapy in the head so tumours can be targeted where it is very difficult and dangerous to operate.

"At the moment people have to go to Sheffield or other centres for this treatment, so it would be of real benefit if it were readily available to patients in Oxford and Oxfordshire. The numbers needing this treatment are likely to grow in the future. The project will also play a part in keeping Oxford at the forefront of neurosurgery and related research."

"They were on the cusp of going ahead with the build until NHS England said they were reviewing the position nationwide."

Andrew has written to the Chief Executive of NHS England in support of the project.

Simon James, Director of Nuffield Health's The Manor Hospital, said: "It is a very important project for the people of Oxfordshire.

"The goal is to put a very innovative and well-used treatment into Oxfordshire that would mean 100 to 150 patients who travel up to Sheffield can have it locally. If you had brain cancer, would you want to be travelling up to Sheffield for treatment? Probably not.

"We accept the NHS has a limited amount of money but everybody keeps kicking the football around while patients are suffering here."

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