The pandemic, long-standing staff shortages and other factors have also contributed to the growing number of people waiting for treatment on NHS.
When patient contact local hospitals to find out when they might be seen or if their symptoms and condition has worsened, they are often asked to contact their GP and request an 'expedite letter'. This is frustrating for you and the surgery as it rarely results in appointments being brought forward.
Furthermore, it is very difficult for a GP to measure to what extent your condition has worsened. We take your word for this, and the hospital should do the same. When making decisions about who to prioritise it is only possible for the hospital to compare your condition and needs against all the other patients on their waiting list.
Mount Avenue Surgery has created two letters for you to use if you want to inform the hospital of a change in your symptoms. Letter one is for patient waiting for a first appointment with a specialist. The second letter is for people waiting for a follow-up appointment, treatment, or operation.
Please download the template letter below, completing your details and explaining the change in your symptoms. The letters are in Word format and only the areas highlighted in yellow can be edited:
Expedite First Hospital Appointment.docx
Expedite Follow Up Hospital Appointment.docx
You should post your letter to either Outpatients Department (for first appointments) or your Consultant's secretary (for follow-up care). Please click on the links for the addresses of:
Mid & South Essex Foundation (Basildon Hospital, Broomfield Hospital, Southend Hospital, Orsett Hospital) https://www.mse.nhs.uk/contact-us
Barking, Havering & Redbridge Hospitals https://www.bhrhospitals.nhs.uk/contact-us
If you would like support whilst waiting for hospital treatment or an appointment you can also visit https://www.myplannedcare.nhs.uk/
In the event of change in a potentially life-threatening condition e.g. a known cancer, or heart and lung symptoms please contact Mount Avenue Surgery, call 999, or 111 in the first instance.