COVID-19 and hospital referrals
Some important changes are being made to the way we refer patients to our local hospitals in an effort to help the hospitals manage their resources and treat the people who need help at this difficult time. This leaflet explains the measures that we have been asked to take during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic.
Along with other GP practices in Bradford district and Craven, we can now only make urgent referrals to our local hospitals. For the foreseeable future, all routine referrals of patients to hospital will stop.
For all important day-to-day activity, such as anti-coagulation (Warfarin) and glaucoma (eye) services, hospital clinicians are consulting with patients using video, telephone, email and text messaging services.
This is in line with national guidance about the COVID-19 pandemic, in which hospitals have been told to postpone all non-urgent planned treatment.
When considering whether you need to be referred to hospital, your doctor (GP) or healthcare professional will decide whether an urgent referral to hospital is appropriate. If it is, one will be made in the normal way.
But if an urgent referral isn’t immediately necessary, your GP or other healthcare professional will ask you to return to the practice, if your symptoms persist, when the health system has reinstated normal working patterns. The practice will not put you on a list to be contacted again, so it is important that you speak to your GP again at a future date if your condition doesn’t improve.
If, in the meantime, your symptoms become significantly worse, you should contact the practice for further advice. Outside surgery hours, please contact the NHS 111 online service or, if you do not have access to the internet, telephone the service direct on 111.
We will ensure that vulnerable patients – for example those with dementia or severe mental illness - are contacted by the practice again at the right time.
This information also covers hospital walk-in services – such as x-rays and blood tests. Where diagnostic tests are urgent, you will be given an appointment to attend.