"didn't realise I might not be offered treatment"

About: Devon Access and Referral Team (DART)

(as the patient),

Went to my doctors 10 days ago and they told me they would refer me to a specialist for my eye problem.

Which according to the letter I received a few days later, was a service I thought I would get.

I rang up to make an appointment and the operator said they would have to speak to a G. P first and then they would get back to me.

When they called back they told me I couldn’t get the treatment and was told I would need to go back to my doctor, but I don’t know what they can do as they referred me for the treatment in the first place.

I have an appointment to see my doctor but I feel like I am stuck in a loop and I don’t know how to proceed.

On the letter I received it only mentions that I might not be offered a choice of hospitals, not that I might not be able to see a specialist at all

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Response from Gemma Smith, Project Support Manager - Devon Referral Support Services, Devon Access & Referral Team (DART)

Dear King80,

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience of using the DART service, I can only apologise that it was not a positive one.

From the information in your post it sounds as if your referral relates to the Low Priority Treatments Policy, which has been in existence for many years. The Policy determines those procedures which are not normally funded by the NHS. The current guidelines have been developed with the support of GPs and Consultants. Please find further information at the links below:

Low Priority Treatments Policy - February 2011 (http://www.devonpct.nhs.uk/Library/Treatments/TP02_Low%20Priority%20Treatments%20Policy_%20Final%2007.09.2011.pdf)

At DART we seek further advice from our GP Support Team on any referrals that may be directly affected by this policy. Your GP will have been informed on the next steps in your treatment. I would welcome the chance to look into this a little further for you and would be able to do this with some more details about your referral. If you are happy to, please can you contact me 01626 883712 or on our Choose and Book help desk email address cab.helpdesk@nhs.net. I work from Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

I apologise for the frustration you have felt and hope to speak with you soon.

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