Outpatient appointment changes because of COVID-19
As we respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are taking measures to protect staff and patients including changes to some of our services.
We have put together some responses to our most Frequently Asked Questions about these changes.
Your outpatient appointment is to see a specialist or clinician about your condition without being admitted into hospital. You may have an outpatient appointment before and/or after your admission to hospital.
Booking an appointment
To get an outpatient appointment, your local doctor needs to send a referral letter to the hospital outlining your medical condition.
The hospital will send you a letter either offering an appointment, letting you know that your name has been placed on a waiting list, or advising of alternative services. Your appointment offer letter will give you information about the clinic you will attend and how to prepare for your appointment.
If your condition changes or you are concerned about your health before the date of your appointment, please contact your local doctor.
Please make sure that you tell the hospital of any changes to your contact details including current home address, phone/mobile numbers and next of kin.
While you are on the waiting list
The hospital may contact you while you’re on the waiting list to check your personal details and to confirm whether you still need to remain on the waiting list. This is to ensure we can easily contact you immediately when an appointment is available.
Confirming your appointment
Once you have received your appointment letter, you will need to call the clinic and confirm your appointment. If you do not confirm your appointment, it may be offered to another patient who is on the waiting list. If you are unable to attend your allocated appointment, please contact your clinic to cancel or reschedule your appointment.
At your appointment
When you arrive, you will check in with either a receptionist or a patient kiosk. You will be directed to your clinic waiting area, or be sent for any tests required before your appointment. Our volunteer staff can assist you if you have any queries.
Appointment waiting times
While we aim to keep clinics running on time, some clinics may have unavoidable delays that can change your appointment time. We ask you to allow 2-3 hours for your specialist appointment. If you believe you have been waiting too long, please notify the receptionist staff at the clinic.
At your first appointment the specialist will discuss your concerns, and health care plan. You may require an examination or further tests.
Follow up appointments
If your specialist suggests a further appointment, you may be asked to obtain a referral from your local doctor. Our reception staff or clinic staff will let you know if this is needed.
The hospital pharmacy is located on the ground floor, close to the outpatient clinic area. You are welcome to use your own community pharmacy. However, some medications may not be on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme and you may have to pay extra for these if purchased outside the hospital.
After your hospital appointment
Your doctor may advise that you require surgery or another type of procedure. If this is the case you will be placed on a waiting list and may need to attend the Pre-admission Clinic
or Anaesthetic Clinic prior.