What is E-referrals?
E-Referral is a service that lets you choose the hospital or clinic you wish to attend for your first appointment, it also gives you the choice of date and time that is convenient for you to fit in with your day to day life.
How E-referral Works
When you and your GP agree that you need an appointment with a specialist, E-referral shows which hospitals or clinics are available for your treatment.
A referral letter is then dictated by the GP and this is passed to the secretary for typing and then an Appointment Request is raised on the E-referral system and an Appointment Request letter is printed off which lists your unique booking reference number, your NHS number and a list of hospitals or clinic options for your to choose from. It also gives you a password with your appointment request letter, this is then sent to you through the Royal Mail.
Once you have received your paperwork you can then decide how you wish to book your appointment; this can be via the telephone, using a national number on the letter or via the internet. Please note that whilst the vast majority of appointments can be booked this way, in some cases you will need to telephone your chosen hospital directly to make your appointment. This is because the hospital appointments system does not link to E-referrals.
Can I Book all my Appointments through E-Referrals?
When you and your GP agree that you need an appointment with a specialist, you can book your FIRST hospital or clinic appointment using E-referrals. Any follow up appointments are arranged by the hospital themselves.
If a patient has a query regarding an appointment made then the patient should contact that hospital direct. You can usually find their direct contact number on your clinic letter on the top right. Or you can ring the hospital directly as ask the switch board to transfer you to the appropriate consultant secretary
If you have a query with regards to booking an appointment through the E-Referrals system they can phone the E-referrals number which you will have on the paperwork you received through the post. If you still have a problem you can speak to the Practice Secretary directly or ask the practice online.
Role of the Practice Secretary
The role of the Practice Secretary is to type all of the referral letters for the patient and then raise the appointment request onto the E-referrals system, so that the patient can then book an appointment.
Once the Practice Secretary has raised the request onto the system, they will then print off the request which will have a Unique Booking Reference Number, list of hospitals that the patient can choose from to attend and a Password. This will then be sent to the patient for the patient to book the appointment.
If the patient knows they are being referred via the E-referrals system and they haven’t received there paperwork within 3 weeks they should contact the Secretary directly or ask the practice online, for her to reprint the information off again, which can either be sent or the patient could come and collect from the Surgery.