Health insurance company Vhi is launching a new rapid access Dermatology service for the diagnosis and treatment of most dermatological conditions on an outpatient care basis.
The new service will be delivered in partnership with AllView Healthcare.
It will provide care for the diagnosis and treatment of medical dermatological conditions including common skin conditions such as acne, lesions, sun damage and melanoma – the most serious skin cancer.
There are more 45,000 people awaiting a dermatology appointment in Ireland with 43% waiting for six months or more.
Currently every year in Ireland, over 1,000 new cases of melanoma are diagnosed with non-melanoma skin cancer the most common cancer in Ireland.
By 2045, it is projected that the number of cases of melanoma diagnosed among men will increase by 177% and among women by 140%.
Vhi said its new Dermatology service will offer one of the fastest routes to medical dermatology treatment nationwide, with appointments available within ten days for Vhi members.
Teledermatology appointments are available for Vhi members nationwide at AllView Healthcare Clinics and use specialist imaging equipment to record a series of high definition microscopic and macroscopic images of the skin complaint.
Dr Rupert Barry, Consultant Dermatologist and Clinical Lead for Vhi Dermatology Services said that over recent years, there has been a growing incidence of skin cancer and other skin conditions with an increasing number of patients requiring end-to-end care from diagnosis to surgical excision.
“This trend is only set to accelerate. That is resulting in considerable wait times for patients looking to access dermatology services in Ireland with one in four having to wait a year or more for treatment,” Dr Barry said.
“Tackling long wait lists and providing timely access to care will be pivotal to ensure the long-term health and wellbeing of the population. By providing appointments to patients within days our service provides a faster and more effective approach to the management of skin conditions,” he added.
Eoin O’Reilly, CEO of AllView Healthcare, said the new service will provide an unparalleled patient experience and help provide peace of mind to patients.
“By joining forces, Vhi and AllView Healthcare can provide the fastest route to dermatology treatment in Ireland, delivering appointments, accurate diagnoses, and treatment plans to patients within days, rather than months,” he added.