RCGP praises referral support schemes

The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) has recently launched a campaign to persuade CCGs to cease funding referral management initiatives. We are pleased to report that the CASES programme delivered by Primary Care Sheffield is a referral support scheme of the type endorsed and supported by the RCGP as below:

“The RCGP supports the use of initiatives which are primarily designed to improve referral quality, which we have termed ‘referral support’. There is evidence to suggest that successful approaches to referral support include combinations of local expertise, specialist advice, peer review and reflection, and pathway development and guidelines. However, the RCGP does not support the use of referral management initiatives which are primarily designed to reduce referral numbers by imposing external control measures onto GP referrals. The aim of CASES is not to slow down or stop referrals, but rather speed up treatment for the patient by ensuring that referrals are made appropriately and provide as much of the required information as possible. Referrals are peer-reviewed by colleagues with a special interest / qualification in the specialty, which allows the team to not only advice on the referral reviewed, but also to provide access to educational materials in relation to the complaint. The peer reviewing GPs are supported and mentored by STH consultant colleagues and we aim to improve collaboration between primary and secondary care in Sheffield to provide the best possible care for our patients.”

Details of the RCGP campaign and report about quality patient referrals can be found here.

Details of the CASES scheme can be found here.