We are changing the way we are communicating around outpatient appointments. This is part of a national programme to give patients greater control over their journeys through hospitals.
What is happening?
From now on, anyone with a gastroenterology appointment will start to get NHS notifications via SMS, email or NHS app, notifying them of the appointment as it is set up, reminding them of the appointment 24 hours before, and informing them of any alterations.
In addition to this, there will also be SMS notifications to any patients with appointments that are over 12 weeks old asking if the appointments are still needed.
Using the NHS app
Welcome to a quick overview of a big change to the way patients can access their appointments at North Tees and Hartlepool Foundation Trust
As part of an NHS England drive North Tees and Hartlepool are moving outpatients appointments into the NHS app
As well as cancelling confirming and amending appointments patients will also be able to view important appointment details like directions, time of appointment and duration.
It is very important to note physical letters will not stop. Physical letters will only stop when a patient chooses.
There will be SMS notifications and this may cause confusion. It is essential we are all as aware as possible of this to support our patients. Spread the word!
It is likely some patients may notice the providers within the NHS app. We are using HealthCall as our main provider, however it is likely Netcall and DrDoctor will be visible through wider activity.
The key information is
26th September live Gastroenterology Outpatients appointments will start appearing in the NHS app
Patients will receive NHS notifications (SMS, App notification or email) for each new, amended or cancelled appointment in Gastroenterology
We are also sending SMS notifications for waiting lists validation starting the 27th September. This will be delivered through NetCall
How does this benefit me?
It is a fast way of confirming and reminding patients about their appointments.
This will allow our patients to be in more control of appointments, reduce the likelihood of missed appointments and help ensure the best path through your healthcare journey.
What if I don’t have the NHS app?
You can still receive text and email alerts as long as we have your details.
You can also call the relevant service to change/cancel your appointment.
Is it better to have the NHS app?
The app allows you to access the new appointment booking system which allows you to book, rearrange or cancel your appointments which texts and emails cannot. If you think this will benefit you, it would be worthwhile to download the app.
I already have the NHS app – do I need to do anything in order to be able to take advantage of this new system?
No. You don’t need to re-download the app or any kind of extension to access the new booking system.
What are the advantages of having the NHS app?
Using the app provides you with much control over the times of your appointments – you can book, rearrange or cancel via the app. It’s fast and easy to use.
Is it secure?
Yes. We’re following all NHS and government regulations to guarantee your privacy.
How will it happen?
We are trailing the system with our gastroenterology service from Wednesday 27 September. This will see 900 to 1,000 appointments per month which will help us understand any challenges as we work towards our aim of offering the service to every outpatients appointment by February 2024.
Is the NHS app free?
Yes, it is completely free of charge.
How do I get the app?
You can download the NHS app at: