GIRFT has worked with the Patients Association to create an animated video for patients about the benefits of elective surgical hubs.
The video explains how some patients may be offered the option to have their surgery at a hub instead of their local hospital as part of the national drive to reduce waiting times for planned surgery.
Over the past 18 months, GIRFT has successfully rolled out the elective surgical hub programme, supporting hospital trusts to ring-fence planned surgery and reduce waiting times for routine operations and procedures. There are more than 90 surgical hubs already established in England and around 40 more hubs are planned.
The animated video was created by drawing on the experiences of patients who chose the option to have their planned surgery at a surgical hub. GIRFT teamed up with the Patients Association to undertake research into the patient experience and to learn what works best for patients who are referred to a surgical hub for their operation or who may be transferred from one trust to a surgical hub in another trust under a process called Mutual Aid.
Patients were asked what information they needed to make an informed decision on opting for a surgical hub and what they felt would improve the overall process, including the scheduling of appointments and travelling to the hub, which may be in a different location to their local hospital. The insights from this patient engagement will be used by GIRFT to inform the further development of hubs.
The video seeks to illustrate the potential benefits and purpose of surgical hubs, in providing more capacity for non-emergency surgery, helping to reduce waiting times for planned operations. It explains what is involved if patients choose to have their surgery at a hub and presents other patient experiences, aiming to support patients in making informed decisions.