Top 10 Diagnostics
Diagnostics imaging is currently limited to Ultrasound and MRI with only a small number of other examinations on offer, mainly Bone Density (DEXA) with a very small number of Plain X-Rays booked via e-Referral. SNOMED referrals are bookings where the GP has selected a clinical term to search for a very specific examination and does not have a specific label.
The second is that Radiology appointment booking systems are not compliant with the messaging requirements.
With e-Referral providing a more flexible messaging and interfacing operating system it will be interesting to see how quickly its use increases or not.
So which providers are getting the bookings? Global Diagnostics are top of the table and are undertaking twice the volume of the next nearest, Peninsula Ultrasound.
Care UK, Alliance Medical and Inhealth Group Ltd are in 7th,8th & 9th respectively.
The greatest volume of bookings are for ultrasound which accounts for over 80% of all the diagnostic bookings and MRI around 13%.
Many areas of England do not offer access to diagnostics on e-Referrals and very few have opened up the market to competition and choice for their patients.
With so many established NHS diagnostic providers struggling to meet demand from the acute admissions, A&E waits and 18 Week Referral to Treatment (RTT) it will require some bold and innovative moves from CCG’s to create the diagnostic capacity to meet the NICE guidance. The NHS hospitals have the equipment which has traditionally operated 9 to 5 Monday to Friday and Saturday morning, the difficulty is finding the trained staff to operate the complex equipment.