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The Dermatology Council for England

A Manifesto To Improve Dermatology Services


The Dermatology Council of England believes that the following minimum standards  

should apply to the provision of skin care services in the UK.


The Council therefore calls upon the Government to commit to providing these standards:



1.   Equitable access to the full range of dermatology services throughout the UK

      through the development of agreed gold standards for all dermatology services,

      no matter where a person lives. When health-care targets exist,they should not

      disadvantage any group of patients.



2.   All dermatology services should provide holistic support, treatment and care.

      In order to achieve gold standard status, all services must fund and offer access to

      psycho-social support, including specialist nurses, camouflage services and where

      appropriate, counselling and psychotherapy.



3.   Minimum requirements for dermatology patients should include:  


    • Ready access to a healthcare practitioner who is adequately trained and experienced enough

      to diagnose and manage their condition and has demonstrated that their training is up to date.


    • This should apply to the assessment of both skin cancer and inflammatory skin disease.


    • Prompt and easy access to specialist care, when required.  


    • Continued follow up care, if required, by the same team.


    • Free prescriptions if their skin condition is chronic.


    • Access to a comprehensive skin surgery service and a full range of medication as prescribed.



4.   Provision of high quality dermatological surgery for the surgical management of skin cancer, including high quality

     Mohs micrographic surgery when required.



5.   As with cancer services, 'supportive care' must become integral to dermatology.



6.   Medical undergraduate training and gp training should be sufficient at least to ensure that all doctors have a basic

     knowledge in dermatology for common and important diagnoses.



7.   Basic nurse and pharmacist training should also include dermatology and those specialising in dermatology should have

     easy access to post-qualification training if they desire it.



8.   Patients should be properly consulted in the design of their local dermatology services particularly if there are to be

     major changes to the way that skin care services are to be delivered. It should not be possible for a service provider to withdraw

     from their role without consultation with patient representatives.

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