High Quality Care from CareNorthants
Care UK delivers the clinical services for both of the CareNorthants services, providing patients and commissioners with the reassurance that comes with being supported by one of the largest independent sector healthcare providers in the UK.
Care UK works in partnership with the NHS to deliver more than 50 services throughout the UK, from walk-in centres and GP practices to out of hours services and prison healthcare.
In terms of the diagnostic services we provide, we believe in the importance of delivering fast, accurate services in locations that are convenient for patients.
Our community-based diagnostics services are run by professional, friendly and highly trained clinical staff, using the very latest imaging technology and techniques, and who pride themselves on reducing waiting times for patients.
Our diagnostic centres, treatment centres and mobile services are located around the country and provide a wide range of diagnostic scanning for people who have been referred by their GPs.
Musculoskeletal (MSK) services
At Care UK we believe in providing community-based care wherever it is clinically safe and achievable, and that patients should be seen by the right person, in the right place at the right time.
We provide flexible MSK services tailored to the needs of local people across Buckinghamshire, Greater Manchester, Lincolnshire and Northampton for around 72,000 patients per year. We also run a musculoskeletal triage service for Milton Keynes. Our MSK services are complemented by the elective surgery we provide, mainly in orthopaedics, at 11 NHS treatment centres around the UK.
Creating quality through innovation
We use innovative approaches to cut waiting times for patients and reduce costs for commissioners, all while improving the quality of our service. Below are a few examples of how we’re doing this in our MSK services across England:
- For all MSK conditions we use an electronic referral process and a standard referral template that captures all the patient’s information in one place. All referral documents are scanned and uploaded to a central system to support clinical triage.
- We use video links so that consultants can conduct consultations for patients at satellite sites without the need for patients to travel. (Plans are underway to implement remote physiotherapy consultations, which patients can participate in over their iPad.)
- We have developed a physiotherapy app for smartphone and iPad, called Pocket Physio, which provides patients with helpful pre-and post-surgical exercises to promote their recovery.
- Our Manchester clinical assessment and treatment centre (CATS) provides consulting, diagnostics and therapy on a mobile basis, enabling us to deliver the service across a wide geographical area.
- Predictive triage guidelines, as well as support from designated consultant leads, enable us to accurately schedule patients for clinics when the appropriate staff, facilities and/or diagnostics are available, saving them repeat visits.
Adding value to patients and commissioners
- Our ‘one stop’ approach reduces follow-ups, reducing the average cost of the pathway by 20%
- At our ‘single point of access’ Buckinghamshire MSK service:
- The secondary care conversion to surgery ratio has improved from 30% to 90%, so there are fewer unnecessary first appointments
- Similarly, 70% of those patients where the GP had indicated the patient should be assessed in secondary care were managed and discharged successfully from the community service; just 30% were subsequently referred on as per the original request
- This has achieved a huge reduction in waiting lists, from 16 weeks to under 4
- Commissioners in Lincolnshire have reported that our MSK service there has been successful in:
- Deflecting 80% of patients away from orthopaedics and secondary care, reducing pressures on wait times at the United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust.
- Highlighting the need for patients requiring a course of physiotherapy within this CCG – 44%
- Discharging 24% of patients back to the GPs with no need for any further intervention