A Clinical Assessment and Peer Review (CASPeR) system was rolled out across Darlington, Stockton-on-Tees and Hartlepool in summer 2017 as a pilot programme. It is an additional specialist clinical opinion available to support GPs to make decisions about what the most appropriate treatment plan should be for a patient.
Utilising a set of agreed clinical criteria, referrals will be assessed quickly and a decision made as to whether the referral should be processed in the usual way, or if it is felt that alternative services should be explored first, the referral will be returned for the patient’s GP to action this.
GPs have responsibility to make best use of NHS resources and need up to date evidence and advice to be able to treat patients in practice or refer on appropriately. From now on, they will be able to seek the opinion of the CASPeR system.
Unnecessary outpatient appointments are a large cost to the NHS. CASPeR is being put in place to make sure practices follow clinical guidelines which have been agreed locally with GPs, hospital consultants and many other relevant practitioners. This will improve referral quality and ensure that all referrals follow the most recent clinical guidelines. This will also ensure that patients are treated in the most appropriate way, first time.
We have produced a patient leaflet and poster to provide you with more information about the CASPeR system.