6 Implications for the NHS
6.1 According to the British Nuclear Cardiology Society survey, there were about 1200 SPECT scans per million population in the UK in 2000. The average waiting time for a scan was 20 weeks. The submission prepared jointly by the professional groups estimated the optimal level of SPECT provision to be around 4000 SPECT scans per million population per year, calculated on the basis of current revascularisation and CA rates. Furthermore, it suggested that suitable waiting times would be 6 weeks for routine scans and 1 week for urgent tests.
6.2 In order to achieve these levels of both adequacy of provision and speed of accessibility, it is estimated that 73 additional gamma cameras would be needed in England and Wales, at a capital cost of around £18 million. This is based on providing 2000 scans per annum per gamma camera, and a unit cost of £250,000 per camera.
6.3 Because of the current lack of trained personnel, these levels of provision could take some years to achieve, so the total cost to the NHS is likely to be phased over several years. Once a steady state is achieved, based on the provision of 4000 SPECT tests per million population per year, the estimated annual revenue cost would be in the order of £27 million.