The Board received a report that provided an update on the Halton Quality Referral Programme; namely the implementation of the Referral Facilitation System (RFS) as a key component of the programme. The report was presented by Dr David Lyon – Chair of the NHS Halton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).
It was reported that in October 2016, NHS Halton CCG’s Governing Body approved an invest-to-save approach for the implementation of a RFS as part of the CCG Quality Referral Programme. This process facilitated the transfer of primary care referrals to secondary care via a secure electronic Integrated Care Gateway (IGC). The patient was then offered a choice of secondary care provision via use of the national e-referral system. The administration associated with e-referral was handled by the Referral Management Centre (RMC) which was provided by Midlands and Lancashire commissioning Support Unit (MLCSU).
The report went on to discuss phase 2 of the RFS implementation which was the introduction of a clinical triage process. Further it discussed patient communications and monitoring of the system and Members were referred to the diagrams in Appendices 1, 2 and 2 (a), which explained the current referral process, the referral facilitation process and the full referral facilitation process (including clinical triage and audit trail).
There were a number of drivers associated with the implementation of the RFS and these were also presented in the report and discussed by the Board.
Members queried the security of the IT systems in the NHS to be able to cope with the RFS. It was noted that all GP’s would use the same system and all information would be stored in a ‘cloud’ so could not be lost. The securenhs.net system was robust and used nationally.
An update would be provided to the Board in approximately 6 months’ time.
RESOLVED: The Board noted the update on the implementation of the RFS in Halton.