The introduction of a nurse-led telephone clinic for follow up urology appointments has saved more than 200 hospital attendances a year at Salisbury Foundation Trust.
The clinic was set up in March 2011 by specialist urology nurses for patients with lower urinary tract symptoms, who are often elderly and can find it difficult to travel to hospital.
Urology specialist nurse Billy Richardson said: “Urology nurse led clinics have been used in Salisbury for many years with lower urinary tract symptom follow up clinics taking place twice a week. We felt that many of these patients could benefit from follow up over the telephone, rather than coming into hospital for an appointment.”
In a consultation most patients said they were happy with the idea of the telephone service as long as they had the opportunity to attend clinics in person if needed.
Mr Richardson said: “We now have telephone clinics once a week for appropriate patients, and the latest audit has shown that the majority of patients with urinary tract symptoms are now followed up in this way. This has cut over 200 hospital visits each year.”
He added: “Nearly all preferred the service because of its convenience and, where patients wanted to come in or needed further investigations, they were referred back appropriately to the clinic. No patients needed to be readmitted for their condition following referral or discharge back to the care of their GP.”
A trust spokesman added that the clinic had not been publicised until now because the team wanted to carry out a thorough audit of the service to ensure it was effectiveness. Based on the findings of the audit, the team won a trust service improvement award in November.
8 January 2013