Hampshire chief medical officer explains what to do if the hospital says to call your GP, but your GP says to call the hospital

IT'S an age-old problem faced by patients across the UK.

Wednesday, 9th March 2022, 4:55 am

You've been to your GP and been referred to your local hospital for a medical assessment or procedure - but then don't hear anything about your appointment.

When you phone up, the hospital says to call your GP... but the GP says to phone the hospital.

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Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham. Picture: Will Caddy

Now, a chief medical officer in Hampshire has given a definitive answer to this conundrum.

It came after a member of Hampshire County Council raised the question at a health and social care select committee meeting in Winchester this week.

Liberal Democrat representative for Hedge End and West End South, Cllr Tonia Craig, said: 'I had a person in my division who has been waiting on a hospital scan for more than a year.

'They still haven't been notified about any appointment. The hospital has told them to phone the GP, but their GP said it is up to the hospital instead.'

Dr Derek Sandeman, chief medical officer for Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System, has given clear instruction on this issue.

He said: 'The hospital should be the one bearing the responsibility for the appointment.

'If they don't do that then they are failing in their duties.

'The GP will have done their bit already, so it falls on the hospital after that.'

Dr Sandeman's comments came following concerns about the capacity of NHS services due to the backlog in elective care caused by Covid-19.

He explained that in Hampshire, elective care is back up to 98 per cent of its pre-Covid rates.

But while this is being celebrated, there is still a lot of work to do.

Dr Sandeman said: 'We're still under pressure and will see that for plenty of time to come. It's going to be a bumpy ride.

'We're at 98 per cent of our pre-pandemic levels and that's something we're very proud of, but we were behind where we needed to be even before Covid struck.

'That being said, we do see a light at the end of the tunnel.'

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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