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Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital launches new ‘virtual fracture clinic’ to help reduce patient numbers

Patients will still have to attend A&E but should have less hospital appointments following an initial assessment]

The team at Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital Trust’s new Virtual Fracture clinic

Breaking a bone can be a painful experience, but thanks to Ashford and St Peter’s Hospital Trust (ASPH), it could be a little less time consuming.

The trust has introduced an innovative new “virtual fracture clinic” (VFC) in a bid to reduce outpatient appointments.

Under the new approach, hospital patients with acute injuries will initially be seen in A&E and advised they will be assessed in the VFC within a couple of days.

Each case is then assessed by a “consultant of the week” and the patient’s care pathway developed from there.

Patients will then receive telephone advice from the VFC team who offer guidance on the next steps for recovery. Follow-up advice on care management is sent to each patient via email or post.

Cathy Parsons, director of clinical services, trauma and orthopaedics at Ashford and St Peter’s, said: “Since its launch, up to 50% of our patients have been discharged directly after assessment in the virtual fracture clinic and up to 20% have been seen at a later date for follow up care.

“This is simply fantastic news for patients, many of whom will now have reduced or no further visits to hospital following their initial A&E attendance.

“The service is a further boost to our ongoing efforts at ASPH to continually improve the patient experience and will also help the Trust realise some financial benefits.”

Patients will be able to get additional advice and guidance videos from the iMSK website.

(Original Article: http://www.getsurrey.co.uk/news/health/ashford-st-peters-hospital-launches-13641293)

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