How to get referred on the NHS

Having your NHS treatment with us is as easy as 1, 2, 3…

Step 1 – Speak to your GP 

If you and your GP have decided that you need surgery, always remember that you have the right to choose where to receive your NHS treatment. Care UK hospitals can accept referrals from any eligible patient* in need of the treatments we offer, regardless of where you live in the UK, even if you have an existing health condition as long as it’s safe for us to treat you. Visit our Patient Choice pages for more information on your right to choose.

Talk to your GP about the options, and do some research to help you make the right choice for your needs. Consider things like how long you will have to wait for treatment at each hospital, what their clinical outcomes and infection rates are like and how the Care Quality Commission has rated the service.

If you have already been referred somewhere, but change your mind about where you’d like to go, you can still exercise your right to choose. Just tell your GP that you would like a new referral to another hospital.

*patients must meet Care UK eligibility criteria and be ordinarily resident in the UK. Eligibility is checked by your GP.

Step 2 – Referral received and accepted

Once we have received your GP’s referral we’ll be in touch with you to arrange your outpatient assessment.

We want to make sure you are fully informed and assessed before your treatment takes place, so the first stage of your treatment will be a visit to the hospital for an outpatient assessment.
You’ll meet the consultant who will perform your treatment, and this is a great opportunity to ask any questions – you may even want to write these down ahead of your appointment.

We’ll complete any pre-treatment tests then and there, to save you making multiple trips, and talk you through what your treatment will involve. Your consultant and other members of the outpatient clinic team will explain any special preparations you may need to make before you come back.

Your surgical appointment is typically a few weeks after your outpatient assessment.

Step 3 – Treatment and recovery

Your surgery will be carried out and you will be given plenty of aftercare support to ensure you recover as quickly and effectively as possible. You’ll be able to call our helpline with any post-treatment concerns you may have, and we will communicate with your GP throughout the process, ensuring that they receive a comprehensive discharge notice and are ready to assist your recovery.

  • The centre was very clean, everyone was friendly and professional and we were offered tea and biscuits afterwards. Will Adams NHS Treatment Centre

    Dorothy, 2017
  • The whole experience was wonderful: from start to finish I was treated with courtesy and politeness. Everyone was well organised, professional and kind – and that was reassuring. St Mary's NHS Treatment Centre

    Dave, 2018
  • Everyone was so caring, the hospital was so clean, and the food was so good that I even put on weight! The aftercare is excellent too. Southampton NHS Treatment Centre

    Edna, 2018
  • The staff are fantastic, as is the catering. You’re given plenty of time by everyone which made it feel more like I was staying at a friend’s house than being in hospital. Shepton Mallet NHS Treatment Centre

    Daniel, 2017
  • The whole experience, the operation and the care, was absolutely five star. Even being able to park right outside was wonderful. Peninsula NHS Treatment Centre

    Lisa, 2018
  • It was wonderful. Everyone was kind, attentive and friendly and it took away any nerves I had. As you walk through the door you can’t help but notice the calm atmosphere and also how clean the centre is. North East London NHS Treatment Centre

    Irene, 2018
  • It was exceptional: I was out in under 24 hours and recovering in the comfort of my own home. Emersons Green NHS Treatment Centre

    John, 2018
  • The place was spotless and even the cleaners were cheerful and friendly. The food was excellent too and the chef was around to talk to. Devizes NHS Treatment Centre

    Francis, 2018
  • They could not do enough for me. I felt very well cared for and the food was very good - it was like a holiday! Barlborough NHS Treatment Centre

    Michael, 2018 - Barlborough