A DIAGNOSTIC centre in Taunton has thanked the Prime Minister for his visit today (January 20).

Boris Johnson visited the Rutherford Diagnostic Centre Somerset in Taunton around lunchtime.

The Prime Minister praised the collaboration between Rutherford and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust which has delivered a “fantastic” centre.

READ MORE: 'I absolutely love my job' Boris Johnson tells the County Gazette in Taunton

During the visit, Boris Johnson said he was focused on clearing medical backlogs aggravated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I am focused on what I think is the number one issue for British people and it is clearing the Covid backlogs, but also looking at what we can do with new techniques,” he said.

Somerset County Gazette: VISIT: Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the Rutherford Diagnostic Centre Somerset in Taunton

He said diagnostics were part of the problem and the government was looking 'absolutely ruthlessly' at waiting lists.

Rutherford Diagnostics provides diagnostic services from the centre in Taunton which offers Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), Computed Tomography (CT), Ultrasound and X-Ray on equipment provided by Rutherford’s technology partner, Philips.

Sean Sullivan, CEO of Rutherford Health, said: “We’d like to thank the Prime Minister for visiting us today – the centre is unique and plays an important role in helping to meet the need for diagnostic provision.

"We are working in a truly integrated way with the Somerset NHS Foundation Trust and this is delivering a real benefit to patients on a daily basis.

“During today’s visit we also explained to the Prime Minister that we were looking to support the NHS further by offering diagnostic and cancer treatment services at all of our five centres across the UK on a not-for-profit basis.”

The centre is run by Rutherford Diagnostics, a subsidiary of Rutherford Health plc, in partnership with Somerset NHS Foundation Trust.