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GP Bulletin March 2013

In this issue

1. Key performance measures

  • Performance targets

2. Clinical articles and referral protocols

  • Haematology Lab email advice
  • Audiology at the OUH
  • Phantom limb pain research

3. Consultant appointments

4. Trust news and service developments

  • Head and Neck Cancer Services move
  • Private Patients
  • EPR update
  • Cotswold Midwifery-led Unit
  • New Interventional Radiology Suite

1. Key performance measures

The goal of seeing, treating, discharging or admitting 95 percent of patients within four hours effectively remains as a performance indicator.

Healthcare associated infections

2. Clinical articles and referral protocols

Haematology Lab email advice

The Haematology Lab offers free email advice to GPs on the tests it conducts. The aim of this service is to give guidance on choosing the correct test and interpreting the results.

To access it please email:

This email address is secure, so please include NHS numbers if possible. The Lab aims to respond to all emails within two working days. Existing arrangements for advice by telephone continue and other email accounts for advice will forward to the above address. Please let the Lab know how the service works for you, especially if there are any problems.

In addition, this service is part of a broader free facility offered by the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust to give advice to GPs from all departments of Laboratory Medicine. The Departments covered also include: Cellular Pathology, Clinical Biochemistry, Laboratory Immunology, and Microbiology.

The email addresses are:

If you are unsure to which specialty your query relates, please use the generic address:

Audiology at the OUH

The OUH Audiology Service has been chosen as an 'Any Qualified Provider' site for Oxfordshire. Comprehensive provision for diagnosis and rehabilitation, including complex care pathways without the need for re-referral, is provided at the John Radcliffe Hospital and clinics at Banbury (Horton General Hospital), Witney (Community Hospital), Wantage (Mably Way Health Centre) and Didcot (Community Hospital). Further expansion will be announced shortly. We also offer specialist care for paediatric, vestibular and tinnitus patients, and accept private referrals for commercial hearing aids and custom noise plugs.

Phantom limb pain research: pain linked to retained picture of missing limb

Changes in the brain following amputation have been linked to 'phantom pain' arising from the missing limb, in a study supported by the NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre. The team used MRI to study how the phantom limb pain felt by people who have an arm amputated is related to changes in the brain. The Oxford University researchers, along with Dr David Henderson-Slater of the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre, report their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

3. Consultant appointments

  • Consultant in Cardiology with special interest in Imaging
    Dr Andrew Kelion, MA, BM, BCh, DM FRCP.
  • Consultant in Paediatric Respiratory Medicine
    Dr Andrew Ives, MA, MB BS, FRCPCH.
  • Consultant posts in Cardiothoracic ITU and Cardiothoracic Anaesthesia
    Dr Richard (James) Stradling, MBBS, BSc MRCP FRCA EDICM
    Dr Andrew Johnson MB BS, DPhil, FRCA.
  • Nurse Consultant covering the Thames Valley Trauma Network
    Ms Julie Wright
  • Consultant in Clinical Oncology Paediatric Radiotherapy
    Dr David Cutter, MRCP, MB BChir, FRCR.
  • Consultant in Cellular Pathology.
    Dr Stephen Damato BA (Hons), MB BS, FRCPath

4. Trust news and service developments

Head and Neck Cancer Services move into new home

On Sunday 24 March, Head and Neck Cancer Services relocated to an integrated unit in the Blenheim Ward on the Churchill Hospital site. As of Monday 25 March all inpatient and outpatient activities associated with Head and Neck will be delivered from Blenheim.

Key contact numbers are:

  • Ward Reception: 01865 223530
  • Outpatient Reception: 01865 223540
  • MDT Co-ordinator: 01865 231066
  • Clinical Nurse Specialists: 01865 234144 / 34346
  • Sister (Heather Talbot): 01865 235704
  • Clinical Lead (Graham Cox): 01865 223563

Private Patients

A project for the devolution of private patients' activity was launched in November 2012 and was completed at the end of March. As part of that process the Isis Ward (5D) closed to elective admissions on Monday 11 February 2013.

Private clinical services are now organised by Division and include the following:

  • Cardiac, Vascular and Thoracic
  • Children's and Women's including Maternity and Obstetrics
  • Critical Care, Theatres, Diagnostics and Pharmacy
  • Emergency Medicine, Therapies and Ambulatory
  • Musculoskeletal and Rehabilitation (Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre)
  • Neurosciences, Trauma and Specialist Surgery including Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery and Refractive (eye) Surgery
  • Surgery and Oncology including Bariatric Surgery

EPR update

The OUH recently upgraded its Cerner Millennium EPR. This has brought in a number of new functions, mainly around Maternity. One of the new functions is a change to the maternity discharge summary (which includes changes requested through the 'Transfer of Information Task Force'). This is now being messaged electronically, in the same way as our ED summaries have been.

Paper copies continued to be sent for the first week, so that we could be confident that GP practices were receiving these reliably. We have also implemented a very wide-ranging change to the maternity module, bringing in some key improvements to usability and improving patient safety.

Also, in the last couple of weeks we are now receiving all results on our active patients in the EPR from all locations irrespective of whether these were requested within the Trust or in the community.

If you have any queries concerning this, visit the OUH intranet:

or contact:

Cotswold Midwifery-led Unit

The review of the Cotswold Midwifery-led Unit is now complete. The scope of the review included; governance arrangements, clinical practice, risk management, professional supervision, barriers to good practice, culture and appropriate service model for the unit. Once we are satisfied that all issues have been resolved it is planned that the Unit will fully reopen for births in July 2013.

New Interventional Radiology Suite

The John Radcliffe Hospital has recently completed work on a new state-of-the-art Interventional Radiology Suite. Using the latest digital imaging techniques, interventional radiology is able to treat more diseases and conditions in a much less invasive manner than open surgery, reducing the length of stays in hospital and the recovery periods for patients. In addition to its benefits to patients, the new suite strengthens the John Radcliffe Hospital's position as the hub hospital at the centre of the developing Thames Valley Vascular Network.