Oct 19

Interface Update October 2023

Interface has continued to have good engagement throughout September and October. At October’s LMCs committee meeting, I provided an update on the interface queries we had received and were resolving on your behalf. I also provided examples of interface difficulties that were ongoing so that constituents could understand the nature of some of the longer-term difficulties. The presentation can be found here. I also provided a short update in our monthly Practice Managers Reference Group podcast which you can listen to here.

General update

In September we received 32 interface queries, the second highest since we began keeping records. It typically takes two days to respond to interface queries. I expect this to increase slightly into November due to annual leave. Please continue to report your difficulties so that we can support you.

In this month’s update, I discuss:

  • How we update you on your interface queries (monthly update)
  • Extending our interface reach (monthly update)
  • Tier 3 Weight Management (South Bank)
  • Advice & Guidance (South Bank)
  • Duplicate paperwork (North Bank)
  • Prescription of red drugs (North Bank)
  • Medical examiner pathway (Humberside)

Monthly Update – October 2023

In September, we launched the Humberside LMCs survey. We are in the process of analysing and reporting on our findings. We will publish our findings when they are ready. Qualitative feedback has already been reviewed. One area of feedback that we noted was that our constituents placed significant value on being kept updated about their interface issues. We will be making our ICB and Provider colleagues aware of this and encouraging them to explore ways of keeping people who have escalated issues updated.

At Humberside LMCs, we have recently implemented an IT solution that will notify us when an update to a constituent is due. We have always attempted to keep constituents updated about their interface difficulties. However, this will help ensure updates are given at regular intervals.

Separately, we have been extending our interface network and have met with patient safety and quality colleagues in central Lincolnshire’s ICB team. In this meeting, we raised issues related to clinical documentation being sent to the wrong practice, and paper documentation being sent instead of digital records. We have also been in discussions with colleagues in Doncaster about similar issues.

New interface issues

1) Tier 3 Weight Management – ABL tier 3 weight management services in North Lincolnshire are requesting that GPs give permission for patients to be referred to bariatric surgery. We are looking into what pathways have been agreed and will advocate for solutions that do not involve GPs.

2) Advice and Guidance – Practices have raised concerns about the way A & G is being used by some specialties. Secondary care providers also feel that the way A & G is used could be improve so that GPs and secondary care benefit. There are discussions about the best way of achieving this. One possibility is a working group that includes general practice.

Updates and resolved interface issues

1) Duplicate copies of paperwork – Practices continue to express concerns about the volume of duplicate information received from secondary care. We have raised this with HUTH who are looking into the possible causes of this. It is possible that there are multiple causes which is why it is taking some time to investigate. Users of SystmOne may now benefit from a feature that highlights when duplicate documentation has been received. We recognise the administrative burden this is causing you and continue to work resolve the issue.

2) Red Drugs – Some practices have reported that they are being asked to prescribe red drugs and undertake investigations that should have been ordered by secondary care. Most recently, these requests have come from maternity services in Hull. The individual patient cases have been resolved but please report any further instances to us so that we can address them for you.

3) Medical Examiner Pathway – The Medical Examiners on the North and South bank are continuing their work to develop a new pathway ahead of new statutory requirements that come into effect in April 2024. They are keen to involve GPs in the piloting of their pathways over the coming weeks. This is not yet a contractual requirement. However, if you would like to pilot or ‘test’ the system so you can provide feedback before the system goes live, please get in touch with the ME office. If you are unsure who to contact Humberside LMCs can provide you with their contact details.

If you would like more information about any of the topics discussed in this update, or would like to raise any of your interface issues, please e-mail s.nichols3@nhs.net or the Humberside LMCs inbox humberside.lmcgroup@nhs.net.

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