Last week local and national media reported that Lincolnshire East CCG was asking GPs not to refer patients to several ULHT specialities unless it was absolutely necessary. GPs weren’t consulted before the announcement. Lincolnshire’s three other Clinical Commissioning Groups shied away from making the same statement.
United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust has for a long time struggled to address very serious problems with how it organises patient care, its staffing and its funding. The Trust has recently made significant progress in addressing cardiology waiting times, but now needs to turn its attention to other departments. We should not disadvantage the East Lincolnshire patients who live furthest from hospitals outside the county.
When you need a specialist referral, the practice will offer you a choice of the hospital you wish to attend. If the waiting time to be seen in Lincolnshire is particularly long, we will let you know before you make your decision. If your problem is non-urgent, and you prefer to wait to be seen locally rather than make journeys outside the county, we will respect that choice.