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Performance of vital demand management service collapses

The performance of one of the NHS’s flagship strategies to reduce demand on over-stretched hospitals has collapsed, HSJ  can reveal.

Internal NHS figures show the number of processed advice and guidance requests (A&G) from GPs to hospital consultants fell by 28% between June and August, alongside a 32% fall in the number of processed cases where patients were diverted away from secondary care. This comes despite the overall number of A&G requests from GPs only falling by 5% in the same period.

A&G services allow GPs to contact hospital consultants before making a referral in order to ensure only clinically appropriate patients are referred to secondary care.

The model is described by NHS England as a ”a key part of the National Elective Care Recovery and Transformation Programme’s work.”

The data showing the fall in processed requests and diversions from secondary care came from NHSE’s specialist advice activity dashboard, which HSJ has seen.

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 26 October 2023


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