Patients waiting for elective surgery are to be given access to a new platform which aims to help prevent delays to their procedures.
The service, called My Planned Care Platform, will provide ‘personalised support’ for patients including information on waiting times and prevention services, such as stop smoking or diet and exercise plans, to ensure they are fit for surgery.
NHS care providers will be expected to upload supportive information on the platform, which will go live on NHS.uk later this month (February).
However, the Department of Health and Social Care said the platform will be available via the NHS App in the longer term.
Ensuring patients are ready for surgery
Around a third of on-the-day cancellations of surgeries are due to people not being clinically ready for treatment, according to NHS England.
Yesterday (6 February), NHSE announced that it would soon be unveiling an NHS elective care recovery plan which will see specialist teams made up of nurses, care co-ordinators and doctors to help screen patients and develop personalised plans ahead of surgical procedures.
The Department of Health and Social Care said the plans would be created ‘in partnership with clinicians’, but a spokesperson told Management in Practice’s sister title Pulse on background that they did not believe there would be a specific GP role.
Amanda Pritchard, chief executive of the NHS in England, said: ‘Last minute cancellations for health reasons are not only a major source of frustration and anxiety for patients, but cost the NHS and taxpayers, so it’s absolutely right that we help people to get fighting fit for surgery.’
Health secretary Sajid Javid said: ‘At the height of the pandemic the NHS rightly focused on treating Covid-19 patients, but sadly it has meant waiting lists have risen and the Covid backlog is going to keep rising.
‘This platform, combined with our record funding to tackle the backlog and invest in innovative diagnostic treatment will help ensure access to life changing care and support for people no matter who they are or where they live.’
It follows GP practices being given the green light to restore any routine services that were paused to support the Covid booster campaign.
Last month, NHS England requested that practices prioritise three key areas, including the continued delivery of general practice services.