Choose and Book is relatively unheard of in the UK, despite the fact it allows a patient to select their desired hospital and clinic for their first outpatient appointment. You can also use the national electronic referral service to choose a suitable date and time, and can select any hospital in England that is funded by the NHS, which includes NHS and some independent hospitals.
Why Choose and Book?
Choose and Book offers greater flexibility to plan and manage your appointments around existing appointments, and can therefore help you slot in your treatment to suit personal and professional commitments. You can also make an appointment that suits your carer’s schedule.
Another benefit of Choose and Book is that you can check the status of your referral, and you have the option to easily change or cancel an appointment via the internet or telephone.
How to Make a Choose and Book Appointment
Once you and your GP have agreed on a medical appointment with a specialist, Choose and Book will offer a list of hospitals and clinics that are available for your treatment. Your GP will then discuss the appropriate options for your medical condition with you.
Should you know exactly where and when you wish to attend a hospital or clinic, you can book an appointment before you even leave the practice. Your GP will also provide confirmation of the place, time and date of your appointment.
If you would like more time before you make a decision, you will receive an Appointment Request letter so you can book an appointment at a later date. Inside your Appointment Request letter will be your NHS number, a unique booking reference number and a list of hospitals or clinic options.
You can make an appointment via the internet or by telephoning the national number included in the letter. You may, however, have to phone some hospitals directly, as their hospital appointment system may not be connected to the Choose and Book service.