The Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) and the Outpatient Recovery and Transformation (OPRT) Clinically-led specialty outpatient guidance offers a toolbox of initiatives to improve patient care and reduce long waits. The focus is on specialties with the highest number of +78 week waits.
However, implementing those tools that require clinical input can be challenging in light of specialist shortages.
The tool of ‘triaging referrals’ – although proven to reduce unnecessary outpatient appointments and improve patient safety – is often the tool that is dropped first.
Bringing in ‘virtual locum’ resource to not compromise this piece of activity pays off for your wait times and patient experience instantly:
Clinically-led Specialty Referral Triage and Validation service
Consultant Connect’s clinically-led Referral Triage and Validation service supports specialty teams to reduce their waiting list backlogs in bulk and/or new referrals as they come in. The service, which uses the clinical expertise of NHS consultants across 17 specialties from our National Consultant Network (NCN), is being brought in on a ‘virtual locum’ basis and has been well received as temporary support for hospital trusts needing additional capacity.
Our switch-on/switch-off model means as local capacities change, the service can be increased to cover more specialties, reduced or turned off completely with 72 hours’ notice.
The service results in cleared backlogs, and patient safety is improved as clinical risks are assessed.
An NHS Consultant triaging referrals via the service comments:
‘Referrals that are returned to Primary Care are done so with sound, clinical professional advice and clear actions. The information is so in-depth that it is as though the patient is receiving a specialist opinion via their GP.’
Clinically-led Specialty Referral Triage and Validation service project examples and outcomes
Of over 1,200 referrals triaged in this area, the NHS consultant initiated and reviewed diagnostics where needed:
- 58% of cases where diagnostics were required and reviewed were returned to Primary Care with thorough advice
Of over 450 community paediatrics referrals triaged in this area:
- 42% of patients were returned to the referring clinician with advice and a comprehensive management plan
Of over 3,800 referrals triaged in this area:
- 21% of cases were given a treatment plan and identified as suitable to be seen in primary care
- 24% of cases were accepted and given a treatment plan ahead of their routine appointment
Of over 1,000 referrals triaged in this area:
- 34% of cases were returned to Primary Care with thorough advice
Of over 1,300 referrals triaged in this area:
- 27% of cases were returned to Primary Care /navigated to the Primary Care gynaecology pathway with thorough advice
- 10% of cases were upgraded to urgent 2ww pathway
Of over 1,700 referrals triaged in this area:
- 74% of cases were accepted for a routing outpatient appointment
- 11% of cases were upgraded for an urgent outpatient appointment
For more information, get in touch:
For further information about how we can support your area to reduce demand for outpatient appointments, email email@example.com, call us on 01865 261 467 or fill in the short form below to request a call back from the team: