5 minutes with a Paediatric Consultant

Dr Bandi talks to us about his experience answering Telephone Advice & Guidance calls from primary care colleagues via Consultant Connect.
5 minutes with a Paediatric Consultant

Dr Srini Bandi is a senior Paediatric consultant and head of service at University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust.


Dr Bandi has worked at University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust for over 10 years, and with his team, he answers Telephone Advice & Guidance calls from primary care colleagues via Consultant Connect.

We recently spoke to Dr Bandi about his experience of the Consultant Connect service…


1. How is the Consultant Connect Paediatric Advice & Guidance line set up in your area?

“The Paediatric line is made up of a rota of three paediatricians everyday (Monday-Friday), including myself. We answer about 120 Advice & Guidance (A&G) calls from primary care each month, and, on average, 70% of those calls we answer first time. We answer calls around our existing commitments, so for example, if I’m covering the wards, I’m also taking Telephone A&G calls. There might be times where we cannot answer, but we always encourage primary care to try us again a few minutes later if they don’t get through the first time.”


2. How is the Consultant Connect Paediatric Advice & Guidance line performing?

“The Paediatric line in Leicester has had the highest number of calls within the trust, via Consultant Connect. We are working towards bringing more paediatricians on the rota to increase the first-time call connection rate.

To date, 64% of calls to the line, with reported outcomes, have resulted in an unnecessary referral being avoided*.”

*Data correct as of 14 January 2022.


3. What are the benefits of using Consultant Connect?

“There are many advantages of Consultant Connect for GPs, patients, and us in secondary care:

  • GPs save time and get advice faster when calling via Consultant Connect – this improves the care of their patients. It’s a much quicker alternative to writing a letter and then sending it to the admin team, who then send it off to the specialty team etc. Having a call answering rota of specialists makes getting A&G easy for GPs. All they need to do is simply dial a single number or use the app to speak to a specialist.
  • The educational and knowledge sharing aspect of talking to GPs via Consultant Connect is fantastic. GPs learn from speaking to a specialist, meaning if they are presented with a similar patient case in the future, they may not feel the need to call us for A&G.
  • From a secondary care paediatrician point of view, speaking to GPs gives us a better understanding of typical queries they see in the community and identify possible gaps and training opportunities.
  • Most important of all, it is beneficial for the patients and the families as they get the right care faster.”


4. Can you tell us about a recent clinical issue that a GP contacted you about through Consultant Connect

“I answered a call from a GP recently who was worried about a paediatric patient having frequent seizures and possible epilepsy. The patient had an appointment for an EEG test to look for epilepsy, but their appointment wasn’t due for a while. The GP contacted us through Consultant Connect to see if we could expedite the appointment so that the child could be seen by us within a few days of having the EEG test.

As a result of the call the GP’s query was answered quickly – they didn’t need to send a letter and wait for a response from the consultant or the admin team. This meant they were able to advise the patient and their parents quickly and the appointment with the paediatrics team was scheduled after the EEG test.”


Click here to download a PDF version of the above.

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