‘Vetting hospital referrals can help patients’ (Ann Robinson, the Guardian).
GP referrals may be rejected, whether sent direct to a hospital or via a referral management service. This process is frustrating for GP and patient alike. Conscientious GPs will be quick to respond to a request for more information. Yet, in some cases a request will sit in an in-tray while the patient waits expectantly for an appointment. According to Ann Robinson, herein lies the opportunity. ‘The referral management system represents an excellent way to drive up standards of referral and ensure efficient and equitable use of specialist resources.’ Success is not a given. Reviewers must consider pathways in a ‘nuanced way’ – that is to say, not everything will fall neatly into clinical guidelines. Further, patients must be able to act where they believe their GP is not acting as an effective advocate. This may include contacting with the referral management system. There are significant benefits available through the introduction of a referral management system, but execution is key. Referral management systems should free up GP and specialist time. In cases where they fail to do so they have been poorly constructed. Effective referral management systems will combine clinical leadership with meaningful stakeholder engagement. Underpinning this is a software solution that enhances the process.
At psHEALTH we’ve spent years developing our software to ensure that it not only meets customer requirements but also provides the mantle to succeed. In developing ART we have combined experience, gained from processing more than half a million referrals, with an appetite for continual learning. For our customers this means they will receive the best of what is available now, with an assurance that we will continue to adapt in light of changing requirements. Read the full Guardian article.