20 May 2016
Bristol Royal Infirmary team behind innovative remote clinics with video pre-op assessments shortlisted for national award
A team of consultants and nurses from the Bristol Royal
Infirmary (BRI) have been recognised for their work towards
reducing the amount of time between a patient being referred to
hospital by their GP and their operation.
The team have introduced remote specialist surgical clinics with
integrated pre-operative assessments via a video-link, meaning that
rather than travelling to the BRI for their appointment, patients
from across or outside the city have the option to attend a local
hospital involved in this scheme.
The clinicians work with patients who are in need of thoracic
surgery which involves procedures on their lung and chest region,
for either benign conditions or suspected cancer.
They are currently running these video clinics from the BRI to
Southmead Hospital and Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, twice a
During these sessions patients can be seen by nurses, have a
discussion with a University Hospitals Bristol specialist and be
assessed by an anaesthetist.
There has been very close collaboration and great team working
between the staff at the BRI and Southmead and Gloucestershire
Royal Hospitals, with consultant surgeons, physicians and
anaesthetists working closely with North Bristol NHS Trust
specialist nurses and pre-operative assessment staff.
The scheme has resulted in the 'remote clinics' working so
effectively that they have cut down the time from the clinic to the
operation by more than a half - from over 44 days to just over 17
days - when comparing those who received a video consultation to a
similar group from the year prior, before this service was
This project is part of wider plan to collaborate with local
hospitals for the entire thoracic surgery pathway, ensuring
patients who require an operation get rapid access to specialist
surgery whilst minimising unnecessary trips to hospital.
The team submitted this service as an entry for the Health
Service Journal's (HSJ) Value in Healthcare Awards and are now
finalists in the Acute Service Redesign category.
Alistair Johnstone, a consultant anaesthetist involved in this
"We are delighted to have been shortlisted for this prestigious
award and look forward to the ceremony on 24th May.
"Patients have told us how pleased they are with the video
assessments, saving them a journey while still delivering the same
quality of care.
"We have had amazing support from specialist nursing staff at
North Bristol NHS Trust and this is a great example of how
collaborative working between NHS Trusts can improve patient care.
We hope to be able to expand this service in the future."
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