Keep Calm and Refer On

by Rachel Stokes on May 21, 2019

Our hub, which holds all our customers’ data securely, is the beating heart of our business. Why? Because it truly addresses one of the biggest challenges in public health. In our 10 years in business, we have seen more and more councils and trusts dealing with the reality of patients with multiple conditions and concerns: whether it’s a combination of physical inactivity and/or mental health alongside illnesses such as cancer or respiratory disease, these complex cases need to be handled with care.

This is how ‘Refer On’, a solution within ReferAll, was born. By using our hub, our customers have created networks with scheme providers in their area: one providing Exercise on Referral (EOR) and weight management, another behavioural change and assistance with anxiety and depression and others with cancer-specific or respiratory care. These multiple condition ‘cross overs’ are increasingly common because health care should never be ‘binary’: it is essential that it is holistic in the truest sense of the word.

For our customers, one of the benefits of the hub is that many needs of each patient can be addressed, either sequentially or simultaneously, depending on the patient’s health and requirements: in essence a ‘sign posting’ service. Consider this: does a health care professional have time to truly assess all the needs of their patient at the time of referral? Maybe an EOR scheme isn’t appropriate yet. Do they need behavioural change first to ease their path to EOR and/or weight management? Maybe additional mental health support is required following EOR.  Refer On creates a cooperative, collaborative network where several services can work with each patient at the same time (or concurrently) towards one goal: tailoring their health and wellbeing provision at every stage.  

This bespoke approach improves retention, as if the initial service referral is inappropriate or insufficient the patient can be referred on and receive contact from an alternative (or additional) service depending on the their needs. This means the council or trust is meeting each patient’s needs and not losing them out of its services entirely.

In the long-term this collaborative approach is a potential money saver too, as the patient won’t need to return to a health care professional for ‘acute’ care due to the long-term benefits of these programmes. Prevention of more serious conditions could be a real boon for public health.

Rachel Stokes

Marketing Outreach Lead

Topics: Referral Schemes, Public Health Campaigns