"Referral process from my GP"

About: Devon Access and Referral Team (DART)

(as a relative),

1. GP referral

2. received letter to phone referral team

3. nice lady - unable to make appt

4. must wait for clinic to phone me to make appt

Why bother with steps 2 & 3 ?

This is repeated every 6 months

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››


Response from Project Support Manager, DART, NHS Devon

Dear ‘daughter carer’,

Thank you for taking to time to get in contact. One of the main aims of DART is to offer patients a choice of hospital and, when requested, to provide information to patients that may help them make their decision. Patients are asked to call DART so that we can discuss with them which hospitals are available for them to choose from. We should have access to the appointment dates and time of each of the hospitals so that patients can take waiting times into account when making their choice.

However, in some instances one of the following explanations may mean that we are unable to book an appointment for you at your chosen hospital and have to pass your details on for the hospital to contact you directly. If you had chosen a different hospital we may have been able to book an appointment for you.

In some hospital departments it is more appropriate for your referral to be reviewed by a consultant prior to offering you an appointment, this is so the hospital can arrange for any additional diagnostic tests to be requested before you see a consultant and at the stage of your first outpatient appointment the consultant will have any results ready to discuss with you. We understand that this is not an ideal way to offer appointments but in the past patients have booked appointments only to have them re-arranged to accommodate any tests that are needed. To avoid causing patients the inconvenience of having to make additional arrangements or change appointments unnecessarily some hospitals find it better to contact patients directly.

Another reason means unfortunately , at times, various services become fully booked meaning we have no available appointments to offer to the patients. In this case, all we can do is pass the patients information on to the hospital of their choice to be added to a waiting list, so that the hospital in question can contact the patient once they have set up more appointments. The hospitals are aware that this does cause problems for patients when trying to book an appointment and they are increasing their appointments to try and avoid this happening, but as demand rises the clinics can become full leaving us no choice but to pass your details on to the hospital for them to contact you directly.

I think one of the above reasons may go in some way to answer your comments, but if not please feel free to contact us again.

Best Wishes

  • {{helpful}} of {{total()}} people think this response is helpful