Endoscopy Network

Clinical leads

Dr Neil Haslam

Clinical Lead, Cheshire and Merseyside Endoscopy Network

Consultant Endoscopist and Gastroenterologist, Liverpool University Hospitals NHS FT


Dr Ash Bassi

Clinical Lead, Cheshire and Merseyside Endoscopy Network

Consultant Gastroenterologist, St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

The Cheshire and Merseyside Endoscopy Network consists of 12 endoscopy units at nine trusts across Cheshire and Merseyside. Our portfolio of work includes the delivery of maximum utilisation via a pointe system on each booking list to ensure we deliver sufficient capacity to clear our backlog in a timely manner for our patients. The portfolio also includes projects to support agile working across Trusts, networked scheduling, reporting and imaging systems and mutual aid to ensure delivery as a system.

The Endoscopy network is involved in the creation of an Endoscopy Academy for the Northwest which trains people in all areas of endoscopy, including clinical, nursing and administration. This ensures we have the skilled workforce needed to meet future demand. During the pandemic, the Network established the Endoscopy Educators Project with funding secured for four experienced Gastroscopists, led by Dr Neil Haslam to deliver training on-site at every Trust in Cheshire and Merseyside. Being able to train the staff in their own theatres and with their own patients was a gamechanger and has helped to reduce backlogs and enabled us to upskill endoscopists throughout the last year.

The Network has also delivered training to accelerate accreditation for bowel cancer screening and used genetic screening to review all patients with a family history of bowel cancer. The Network has also implemented the Cytosponge ‘innovative sponge on a string’ pilot at The Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and is triaging patients to increase capacity. Investment in equipment and training was also secured to deliver Trans Nasal Endoscopy to 4000 gastroscopy patients. This has made a significant dent in the overall waiting list. Networked Capsule Endoscopy is another example of us working together in Cheshire and Merseyside to pool resources, in this case in reporting, to ensure patients in our region have access to the tests they need in a timely manner.