Patient Choice Policy Statement
Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is committed to ensuring patients can exercise choice of service provider in accordance with their rights set outlined in the NHS Constitution.
We will work with referrers, including GPs, to ensure they are aware of patients’ right to choose and that the appropriate information is available to inform this choice which will depend on local commissioning arrangements.
Services provided in the community rather than in hospital
We commission a number of services that deliver care for patients in the community rather than in a hospital, in keeping with our aim to provide care for people closer to home. Examples of locally provided community services are:
- Musculoskeletal conditions (orthopaedic, rheumatology and pain management)
- Ear Nose and Throat
- Dermatology (for patients living in Dacorum and Watford & Three Rivers)
- Nutrition and Dietetics
- Services currently delivered by Hertfordshire Community Trust such as adult bladder and bowel care, adult occupational therapy service, community cardiology, leg ulcer care, podiatry to name a few.
The above list is not exhaustive and could be amended and updated as other community services are developed.
Choice does not apply where a community service is available. You will be referred to a specific provider for the service in question and you will not generally be able to choose to access services from another provider, unless there are special arrangements in place to support this. If a hospital appointment is required then the community service will offer a choice of hospital providers
As set out in the NHS Constitution you have some other choices concerning your care and treatment as a patient, these include:
The right to choose your GP practice, and to be accepted by that practice unless there are reasonable grounds to refuse, in which case you will be informed of these reasons;
The right to express a preference for seeing a particular doctor or nurse within your GP practice, and for practice to make every effort to comply.
If you need to go to a hospital to see a specialist, you have the right to choose which hospital you are referred to. This is a legal right for most patients so you can choose any hospital which offers suitable treatment and meets NHS standards and costs. Your GP will help with choose and you can take information away with you to decide.
If you need to see a consultant you can ask to be referred to a different hospital if you have to wait more than 18 weeks before starting treatment or two weeks before seeing a specialist for suspected cancer.
You can read more about your choices within the NHS here.
The NHS Choices website helps patients in this area by providing tools and information. The resources include:
Health A-Z. Use the Health A-Z to see the common treatment options for particular conditions and find links to specialist charities and patient groups in each area.
Medicines. NHS Choices information and guidance on medicines.
Hospital locator. Tool which allows all NHS hospitals to be searched according to location, consultant, surgical procedures and department.
NHS e-referral service. The online service that allows you to book your own hospital appointments.
These are not the only choices you can make. There are choices in your lifestyle, decisions about your treatment, and even the way in which you interact with doctors and other health professionals that can all affect your health.