Integrated Urology Service
Three skilled Urology teams came together early in 2020 to share best practice for the benefit of patients across Norfolk and Waveney. One of the first steps for the integrated team was the recruitment of medical staff to replace the use of locums and enable the team to join up the on-call service at weekends. Work is already underway to align clinical governance systems, policies and performance information.
Emerging from the pandemic, the team has plans to develop the service, improve patient outcomes and bring down waiting times. Developing a high quality experience for patients is at the heart of the vision for urology services which treat a range of kidney, bladder and prostate conditions including cancer.
The team has been drawing up proposals to share skills among their teams, use more one-stop clinics, increase the use of technology and help patients to self-manage long term conditions. If patients are seen in one-stop clinics, they can access appropriate treatment from a range of professionals and care more quickly, resulting in fewer appointments, with improvements to patient satisfaction and outcomes. The team is also looking at ways to increase the number of patients treated as day cases, avoiding hospital admission and freeing up theatre space for more complex surgeries.
In the face of national shortages of skilled staff, attracting and retaining high calibre staff is vital for a sustainable service and will involve further development of career paths in Norfolk and Waveney.
Urology staff members have been busy collaborating on the new plans and they have also begun to test out the proposals with patient groups with further work due to take place during 2022