Patients awaiting surgery can now benefit from a new clinic that offers care closer to home ahead of their planned operation. 

A weekly nurse-led clinic at Doddington Hospital is providing basic healthcare checks and assessments to patients prior to their surgery. 

Patients attending the clinic will still be required to have their surgery at North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust’s main hospitals in Peterborough or Huntingdon – but are being invited for general observation and swabs to ensure they are fit for their upcoming procedure.  

For many local patients, this is more convenient, less time consuming and also eases capacity on the main hospitals on a daily basis.  

There are plans to extend the clinic at Doddington – which can see up to 40 patients a day – to include blood, ECG and other tests as part of the pre-op assessment. 

All patients invited to attend the clinic will have already completed a digital Pre-Op Assessment form, a Trust initiative to increase theatre utilisation, reduce cancellations and improve the patient experience. 

The clinics come as a result of a partnership approach between the Trust’s transformation team (on behalf of the surgery division) and outpatients team.  

Cambs Times: A patient using the new hospital serviceA patient using the new hospital service (Image: NHS)

Ana Alves, outpatient and health records operations manager, said: “The weekly clinics give us the opportunity to see more patients closer to their home, offering them the convenience of accessing even more healthcare on their doorstep enhancing their patient experience.  

“We have worked very hard in partnership with the transformation team to deliver this new service, which is already being very well received.” 

The overall project started this month on a six-month roll out, beginning with orthopaedics, looking at how the Trust can more proactively manage its pre-operative assessment pathway by using digital technology. 

By requiring patients to complete their pre-op assessment online, the service will be streamlined not only for patients, but for the teams at the sharp end of managing and delivering the pathways.   

Following their early health review, those patients continuing on the pathway for surgery will be sent a digital pre-op assessment form to their mobile phone to complete at their own convenience. 

Once this form has been submitted, the patient will be triaged by the Pre-op team and any additional tests required and managed as a result.

Maxine Drake, transformation programme manager, added: “Bringing these key pre-operative activities to the beginning of the pathway and confirming the patient’s fitness much earlier in the process will increase the theatre utilisation, reduce the cancellations, improve patient experience and overtime reduce waiting lists.” 

Doddington Hospital Outpatient Service is a community hospital service which forms part of North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust.