THE consultant who leads an underfire urology department is being investigated by the General Medical Council, The Mail can exclusively reveal.

Cancer patient Chris Dickson complained to the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust after the time between his check-ups was extended from three to six months.

He had been treated by Muhammad Naseem the clinical lead of the trust’s urology department.

Mr Naseem is one of three consultant urologists whose failings led to a series of clinical errors over the last 18 years including one which contributed to a patient’s death.

Concerns were initially raised by his former colleague Peter Duffy.

Mr Dickson, 43, was diagnosed with bladder cancer six years ago and has undergone a number of operations to remove recurrent tumours.

The dad-of-one, from Morecambe, forwarded his complaint to the General Medical Council after the trust’s chief executive Aaron Cummins apologised for the care he had received.

In a letter seen by The Mail the GMC confirms: “The information... has been passed to the Triage Team in our Fitness to Practise Directorate to consider whether we need to open a fitness to practise investigation.”

Mr Dickson had also complained that Mr Naseem had refused to discuss his request for a radical cystectomy - a major procedure to remove the bladder.

His care has since been transferred to the Royal Blackburn Hospital where on Tuesday he will undergo a cystectomy.

During the 12-hour operation, after which he will remain in hospital for two weeks, he will also be fitted with a neo bladder - a replacement bladder created from a section of the bowel and attached to the urethra to allow a patient to pass urine in the normal way.

The trust’s medical director Shahedal Bari said: “The work of the GMC is set out by the Medical Act 1983 and it covers five areas.

One of these is investigating concerns raised about a doctor’s practice.

“If the GMC decides to investigate a doctor in our employment we would always provide them with any information they require to assist them in their work.

“The trust has asked NHS England/Improvement to commission an independent investigation into the urology service following concerns that have been raised and we are awaiting their response.

“We will continue to work with all agencies involved in scrutinising our care to ensure we continue to offer a safe service for our patients.”

Westmorland and Lonsdale MP Tim Farron has joined forces with Barrow MP John Woodcock, Lancaster MP Cat Smith and Copeland MP Trudy Harrison in calling for a public inquiry into the urology department at UHMBT.

Mr Farron said: “After an horrendous time that I can’t even begin to imagine, it’s great news that Chris is finally getting the surgery that he needs.

“This is testament to the hard work and persistence of The Mail’s Amy Fenton and a valuable reminder about the importance of local journalism.

“But it shouldn’t have to take Chris’ story appearing in the media for him get the treatment he needs and this case just raises further questions about the running of the urology department.”

NHS campaigner James Titcombe, who fought for the Kirkup Inquiry into UHMBT’s maternity services, said he is concerned that ‘history is repeating itself’.

“This inquiry needs to happen and it must not be anything less than Kirkup,” the Pennington dad said.

“What Peter Duffy describes in his (whistle-blowing) book Whistle in the Wind is similar to what happened in maternity and it’s disappointing we’re seeing history repeat itself.”

Barrow MP John Woodcock said: “Myself, Trudy Harrison, Tim Farron and Cat Smith will continue to push for the full independent investigation needed into failings in our trust’s urology department.

“The most important thing is that this frustrated patient is finally booked in for the surgery he needs.

“Independent scrutiny from the GMC is difficult for any health practitioner but I welcome this sign that the body is taking seriously potential risks in the quality of kidney care currently provided in the area.“