Peer reviewing referrals should be for good patient care, not efficiency savings

Publication date: 30 August 2017

Professor Martin Marshall, Vice Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: Reviewing referrals is an integral and constructive part of general practice and we usually do this to ensure our patients are getting the best possible care.

"When the main purpose is to make efficiency savings by reducing the number of referrals, we have major concerns. There is little or no evidence that referral management schemes are cost effective and they can damage patient care.

"We understand the difficult position CCGs are in and that they have to make difficult financial decisions, but our concern is that these schemes can undermine the important trust that exists between GP and patient – and if decisions are being made about patients in the absence of their full clinical records, we do have concerns about patient safety."

Further Information

RCGP Press office: 020 3188 7633/7574/7575
Out of hours: 0203 188 765

Notes to editor

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 52,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.

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