Cumbria Crack

New system to offer direct line to consultants

stethoscope[N]orth Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust and NHS North Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group are launching a new system to allow easier contact between GPs and specialist doctors.

The Advice and Guidance system has been developed by the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay Trust and allows GPs to seek advice via ‘virtual conversations’ from hospital specialists to help improve patient management.

Launched at the start of November, the new system means patients will have more joined up care from GPs and hospital specialists, potentially avoiding unnecessary appointments or investigations, freeing up patient, GP and the specialists’ time while still maintaining the same excellent level of care.

The system is completely secure and GPs will usually receive an answer from a hospital specialist within 48 hours, allowing them to treat their patients more quickly and effectively.

Dr Helen Horton, GP lead for commissioning for the CCG and GP at Distington Surgery said: “The system will allow us to discuss patient management with our hospital colleagues to help us improve overall care.

“It is an easy to use system and I am really excited about its development for our local healthcare system.”

Mr Paul Counter, consultant at North Cumbria Hospitals NHS Trust said: “This new system is simple to use and prevents patients having a wasted journey for a simple consultation, while still receiving the specialist care the hospital provides.

“We’re really looking forward to using it in ENT and I know all the other specialities are keen to get on board in the future.”

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