Health Cash to Boost Disease Diagnosis; Scheme Aims to Improve Patient Care

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Byline: Nicola Weatherall? 0191 204 3308 ? nicola.weatherall@ncjmedia.co.uk

HEALTH experts in the North East have been awarded a cash pot to research the way diseases are diagnosed.

Specialists at Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Trust will team up with scientists at Newcastle University for the PS800,000 venture.

Together, they will assess the effectiveness of new diagnostic tests for cancer, respiratory diseases, stroke, infections and transplantation. It is hoped it will make Newcastle a centre of excellence in the field and lead to improvements in patient care.

Every year more than 16 million diagnostic tests are carried out across the NHS.

This money, announced by the Department of Health, will fund research that looks at the way a number of different diseases are diagnosed, so patients can access the best available treatments more quickly.

Welcoming the announcement, Professor Chris Day, pro vice-chancellor of the Newcastle University's faculty of medical sciences said: "Faster and better diagnosis can be lifesaving for patients and the use of clinical research to improve the diagnosis and treatment of patients is a priority.

"Our centre will promote research into medical tests used to diagnose conditions such as cancer, liver and respiratory diseases.

"Working with the Newcastle Hospitals NHS Trust we can ensure that patients benefit from advances in technology."

The funding is part of a larger pot being split by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) across four NHS organisations in Newcastle, London, Leeds, and Oxford.

These places will become national centres of expertise called NIHR Diagnostic Evidence Co-operatives. …

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