The Charles Clifford Dental Directorate has developed this handbook of referral protocols to provide a clinical framework to support the practitioner when referring their patients to Charles Clifford Dental Services (CCDS) Sheffield Salaried Primary Dental Care Service is now called the Community and Special Care Dentistry Service and is part of CCDS. Demand for salaried and secondary dental services is increasing significantly and referring practitioners should ensure that they adhere to the protocols. This handbook has been developed in conjunction with clinician leads, local general dental practitioners and a patient representative. It was based on a handbook developed in Leeds.
The Charles Clifford Dental Directorate continues to promote the principle of patient choice and chair side choice discussion. However, it is acknowledged that further work, particularly the IT infrastructure needs to be strengthened to support this.
2. Referral Procedure
2.1 Referral forms
The referring clinician should complete the relevant dental referral form (see appendices). All sections of the forms must be completed; failure to complete all sections will result in the return of the referral and subsequent delay in patient care.
The information on the forms should encapsulate the results of a referring practitioner’s examination and diagnosis.1 To minimise additional invasive procedures, any relevant test results, diagnostics, study models (packed securely) and radiographs should be included with the referral. Please ensure that radiographs are recent, relevant and of good quality and are marked appropriately, which must include the date the image was taken. Providing quality information will ensure that an accurate picture is obtained of the nature of the referral so preventing any unnecessary delays.
There are two types of referral:
Routine referrals (see appendix 1 for referral form) with supplemental forms for orthodontics endodontics and community and special care dentistry referrals (appendices 3 to 8)
If you wish for any patient to be seen URGENTLY then this should be clearly stated on the referral form together with the reason(s) urgent treatment is requested
Target two-week waits for suspected cancer (see appendix 2 for referral form) that will be seen within two weeks
These should be faxed to 01142717836 and a paper copy also posted. To confirm the referral has arrived please telephone 01142717838.
Following completion of treatment, and where possible, radiographs will be returned to the original source where relevant to future care.1 It is considered good practice for the referrer to retain a copy of the referral with the patient’s records in the practice.