This bulletin is emailed each month to GP practices in Islington and Haringey. It contains useful information and updates from our GP medical director about Whittington Health. If you have a news item, event or update you would like to share with other GPs through this bulletin, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Welcome to the July edition of Whittington Health's GP Bulletin.
I have had some very positive feedback from our consultants on our implementation of the medical interoperability gateway (MIG). It seems to be bringing real benefits to consultants and GPs. We've put further details on this in the bulletin below.
In the last issue we published detailed waiting time data for the Trust. These are regularly updated on our website. The June data is now online.
I hope you are all enjoying your summer and find the time to get a break.
We have a wide range of outpatient clinics, seeing nearly 1,000 patients a day.
We have been implementing a number of changes to improve the service and patient experience within the department.
Waiting times for outpatient appointments have improved considerably over the last few months, particularly in general surgery, orthopaedics (hips and knees), rheumatology and respiratory. The majority of specialties are now booking to six weeks.
Individual specialties have been reviewing their 'Choose & Book' capacity and are opening up additional slots to enable more patient choice.
We are currently reviewing our call reminder service to reduce DNAs and looking at ways we can inform patients of the impact of not arriving for their appointment using appointment confirmation letter and notices in our clinics.
Temporary changes to microbiology
As part of our laboratory accreditation we will be implementing changes and upgrading the laboratory over the next 12 weeks. This will make us fully compliant against international standard ISO 15189:2012.
To allow us time to undertake these important updates, we will temporarily (for approximately eight weeks) implement the following changes within the laboratory:
Screen for MRSA using cultural methods only, and not the polymerase chain reaction. This should not impact on clinical or infection control outcomes.
Not undertake urine microscopy on routine midstream urine samples. Diagnosis of urinary tract infection should instead be made on the presence of significant bacteriuria. Dip strips should also be used to detect haematuria and pyuria.
Urine microscopy will only be tested where clinically required, for example to know whether casts or renal red cells are present.
Once the updates are complete the standard service for MRSA and urine testing will resume.
If you have any concerns or questions, or believe this may impair clinical diagnosis or management for your patients please contact Dr Michael Kelsey, consultant microbiologist on 0207 288 5082/3 .
Dermatology study: actinic keratosis
The Dermatology Department is undertaking a study on actinic keratosis.
The trial compares two licensed medications for Actinic Keratoses: Ingenol mebutate gel 0.015% (PICATO®) versus Diclofenac sodium gel 3% (SOLARAZE®)
18+ years of age
Have between 4-8 actinic keratoses on the face or scalp
Be willing to come to The Whittington Hospital for up to three study visits over a four month period
Not have received treatment with either Ingenol mebutate gel 0.015% or Diclofenac sodium gel 3% within the last 12 months.
Eligible patients who are referred for this study will be seen in clinic through an expedited pathway and will not have to go through the NHS waiting list.
Refer: GPs should refer to the Dermatology Department as normal or contact the dermatology research nurse.
For further information about this study contact research nurse, Rebecca Oettle at:
Mobile: 07917 201134
This study is sponsored by LEO Pharma.
Medical Interoperability Gateway success
The Trust recently implemented the Medical Interoperability Gateway (MIG) solution, which allows hospital and community staff to access patient information for all Haringey and Islington practices.
There are now over 100 clinicians within Whittington Health using the MIG and the feedback has been very positive. The system gives clinicians real time access to primary care information before treating a patient e.g. medications on admission, medical and social care alerts.
The system has reduced the need to call GP practices to access information.
Professor Sir Mike Richards Oration
GPs are invited to attend Whittington Health's annual oration on Monday 21 September: Will it be possible to maintain good practice within the NHS in the future: the role of the CQC.
This year we are delighted to welcome chief inspector of hospitals for the CQC, Professor Sir Mike Richards to speak at the event.
The title poses the question of how we can maintain standards while managing our resources well. Some challenge if that is possible. Sir Mike will explore the role of inspection and the CQC. All GP practices are also exposed to this regime and this promises to be a very interesting encounter with a CQC leader.
Monday 21 September, 5.30pm for a 6pm start
Undergraduate Lecture Theatre, The Whittington Hospital