Eleanor Coxson is an Optometrist at Eyesite Eyecare Centre. Rapid Telephone and Photo Advice & Guidance in this area is commissioned by NHS Coventry and Rugby CCG and provided by Consultant Connect. Eleanor can use the free Consultant Connect App to contact specialist Ophthalmologists and hospital Optometrists regarding patient cases.
We recently contacted Eleanor to ask her about her experience of using Telephone Advice & Guidance during COVID-19. She commented that:
“I have found the Consultant Connect App particularly helpful during the current Coronavirus situation where our usual referral pathways have been disrupted; enabling me to reduce unnecessary strain upon our hospital eye service.”
Eleanor feels very positively about both Telephone Advice & Guidance and Photo Advice & Guidance and says that she “would strongly recommend this service to her colleagues” who require a specialist opinion. With regards to Photo Advice & Guidance, she states that;
“the option of including photographs and OCT images really helps to give a thorough presentation of your patient.”
She also provides the following advice to other optometrists:
“Once you have ended the phone call, make sure you check your phone screen as there will be several outcome options for you to choose from (e.g, discharged, same day referral). This helps to summarise and end the consultation.” Outcomes are used by CCGs and Health Boards to provide accurate data on how the service is improving patient care, so it’s really important for clinicians to take a few seconds to choose the most appropriate option.
Eleanor has provided the following example of how she has used Telephone Advice & Guidance to benefit a patient.
A patient contacted Eleanor remotely. He “was suffering with chronic eyelid dermatitis”. Unfortunately, his “usual treatment regime was not alleviating his symptoms.” Eleanor used the Consultant Connect App to make an Advice & Guidance call to a specialist.”
How Telephone Advice & Guidance helped:
“I found the entire procedure very beneficial as it provides immediate access to advice because your call is answered within seconds. It was helpful to talk through the patient scenario with an expert clinician. In this case, I was connected to a hospital optometrist and there was also an ophthalmologist present. Together, they provided me a clear treatment regime to relay to my patient.”