Secondary Care – information for NHS consultants, specialists and hospital teams across Wales
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Consultant Connect suggestion box
Clinicians in Wales share their experience
Sign in (to Consultant Connect in your browser)
Click the button below to sign in to Consultant Connect in your browser. If you have yet to sign up for the Consultant Connect service, watch our short ‘How to sign up’ video, click the button below, and follow the simple steps to sign up. Once you have created your login, you can use the same credentials to download and use the Consultant Connect App (available via the App Store or Google Play). Please note that only devices running on an Apple operating system (iOS) of 15 and above or an Android operating system of 11 and above will support the Consultant Connect App.
Getting started with the Consultant Connect App
5 reasons to provide A&G via Consultant Connect
Read about the benefits of providing Advice & Guidance via Consultant Connect and hear feedback from specialists who are already using the service…
Case studies in Wales
In the case studies below, grouped by specialty, health care professionals across Wales share their experiences of using Consultant Connect…
Acute General Surgery
Acute GP Unit Medical Admissions
“With Consultant Connect we get rapid responses to our queries – within two weeks or less. This prevents delay and lets us give peace of mind to our patients because we can advise them on the next steps quickly after seeing them.” Read Dr Johnstone’s case study.
“Consultant Connect is of benefit as we’re able to have a conversation with colleagues. This often ends up saving a lot of worry and time for patients and dentists.” Read Dr Spencer’s case study.
“The Consultant Connect service seems more efficient, timely and uses less staff. Had my condition been more serious, I would have got the treatment I needed at an earlier date, and on that basis, I suspect it is more economical as well.” Read this patient case study.
“I get rapid answers to diagnostic queries and management plans, within minutes. This streamlines the process for both patient and clinician, with fewer steps to get the same result. Very quick and easy to use – even for someone who is not technologically minded. Also, the system is very secure.” Read Dr Linney’s case study.
“I personally have found it very useful to be able to send pictures of rashes, or lesions via Consultant Connect to the Dermatology team on the NCN. We’ve always had an excellent and very prompt response.” Read Dr Davies’ case study.
“It’s worth the five minutes it takes to set this app up to get good timely advice from a consultant. It has saved me time, several admissions and the patient gets appropriate management.” Read Dr Triggs’ case study.
“If a GP or a nurse has a patient in front of them for whom they require prompt answers relating to chronic oedema, I encourage them to call us through Consultant Connect. This way, they can get through to a specialist without delay, who will support them in providing the patient with advice, and efficient management with a prompt referral for support with their care.” Read Karen Morgan’s case study.
“We all know how difficult it can be to find the right numbers, or the right point of contact. With the Consultant Connect service everything is available via one number, or by using the Messaging service through the Consultant Connect App. It’s like a pre-programmed phone directory – and it puts you straight through or if the first person on the rota isn’t available, you’ll automatically be passed onto the next person on the rota rather than having to make a separate phone call.“ Read Dr Gupta’s case study.
Hints & Tips
Frequently Asked Questions
How does Telephone Advice & Guidance work?
Consultant Connect routes A&G calls from clinicians to specialists, either through existing or new telephone numbers. Secondary Care specialty teams can set a ‘rota’ consisting of one or several telephone numbers, anonymised to clinicians seeking Telephone A&G.
Will my number be shared with the clinicians? How will I know a clinician is calling me?
Your number will not be shared with clinicians. The numbers are held securely within the Consultant Connect system. All calls made via Consultant Connect will always arrive from a single inbound number: 01865 922021, meaning personal numbers are never disclosed to the caller. We recommend that you save this number to your phone contacts as ‘Consultant Connect clinician call’.
Do I have to take the calls?
No. In most cases, specialists will be taking calls during their normal work plan, and it is up to individual specialists as to whether they are able to answer a call. When answering a call via Consultant Connect, an automated message will prompt specialists to press ‘1’ to speak to the clinician. If specialists are unavailable when a clinician calls, the system will automatically connect to the next person on the rota rather than sending the caller to voicemail.
How many calls will I take?
Experience to date is that clinicians continue to adhere to established local pathways and use this service wisely, being aware that they are contacting already busy Secondary Care teams. On average, nationally, specialists are each taking around 2-3 calls per week, which average just under 4 minutes in duration each.
Can I access call recordings?
All calls made via the service are recorded for medico-legal reasons. Call recordings can be accessed via Consultant Connect in your browser. You will need to register an account to be able to listen to your call recordings (see question 11).
Once in Consultant Connect, click on ‘Reports’ and the sub-category ‘Calls’. In the call report, you will see that for any calls you have answered, under the column ‘Recording’, there is a cloud icon. Clicking this icon will automatically start downloading an MP3 file of your call to your device.
There is no expiry date for call recordings, so you can go back and listen to previous A&G calls whenever necessary.
Please note that calls can only be downloaded in your browser and not via the Consultant Connect App.
Will I get called out of hours?
No. You will not get called outside of the clinical hours set by your clinical lead/director.
Will I have access to any patient records?
Not always. We ask clinicians to assume that you will not have access to any patient records and that advice should be based entirely on the information that is provided to you via telephone/photo/message.
Who is responsible for the patient whose care is being discussed?
The clinician seeking advice remains responsible for deciding what treatment is to be provided following the receipt of A&G. They decide whether a referral or admission is appropriate for their patient or not. All calls are recorded for medico-legal purposes and can be accessed by you or your clinical lead.
We have poor WiFi and mobile signal at our trust. How can we answer Telephone and/or Messaging Advice & Guidance?
If you have poor mobile phone signal and are unable to use Wi-Fi, you can set a landline or baton phone as the device to receive Telephone A&G calls.
If you are unable to use Wi-Fi and your mobile signal is poor, you can use Consultant Connect in your browser to send or respond to Messaging queries, including photos. Log in using the same credentials you use for the app and select ‘Messages’ from the main menu.
If you have any questions, please email email@example.com.
Is the service free?
Does this service replace other Advice & Guidance routes?
No, this service aims to provide users with additional options for quicker and more efficient access to A&G. Pre-existing A&G routes will continue to be available.
Can existing Trust/Hospital helplines be included?
Yes, existing lines can simply be integrated into the system and positioned as the priority number on the call rota (there is no change for the teams who answer the helplines).
How do I sign up?
If you are joining the Consultant Connect service to provide Telephone A&G, you don’t need to sign up – it’s as simple as answering a telephone call. Often specialty managers will speak to your Account Manager at Consultant Connect and create a call-answering rota (see question 2).
The free Consultant Connect App is highly useful for Secondary Care clinicians. Your Consultant Connect Account Manager can set your access to enable you and your colleagues to make phone calls:
- Across your hospital
- To other healthcare professionals
- Via bypass numbers to call back GP practices avoiding switchboard queues (this is to be used in emergencies only)
We can also set up hospital-specific solutions, such as Multidisciplinary Teams (MDTs), Patient Initiated Follow-Up (PIFU), and more.
The app is like your pre-programmed phone directory. All calls are recorded for medico-legal purposes. You’ll also be able to take safe clinical photos via the app using the PhotoSAF feature. If enabled, you will be able to take IG-secure and GDPR-compliant photos and type messages to share with specialty teams via the app.
You can download the free Consultant Connect App on the App Store or Google Play. Follow the simple steps to sign up, and when asked for your organisation, please include the hospital/trust you are based at.
I have forgotten my password. What should I do?
You can reset your password here.
I don’t have Photo or Messaging options on the app – can you set this up?
Please email the team at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on 01865 261467 so that we can make sure you have the right access.
Whom should I call for help with the service?
For any service/technical queries, please call the Consultant Connect Team on 01865 261467 or email us at email@example.com.
Make the most of your Consultant Connect service – Secondary Care demonstration videos
Consultant Connect routes Advice & Guidance calls from Primary Care clinicians to Secondary Care clinicians either through existing or new channels. These videos help Secondary Care clinicians get started with Consultant Connect and include step by step explanations of how to use the secure app and dashboard, and make the most of it. Click here to watch the videos on the Consultant Connect Vimeo channel.
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