Patient initiated appointments

During your out-patient appointment, your healthcare professional will advise you on the next steps of your treatment.

Some patients will be offered a 'patient initiated follow up' appointment (PIFU for short). This type of appointment allows you to arrange a follow-up for yourself as and when you need it.

You can arrange an appointment for yourself based on your individual symptoms, and receive guidance when you need it. This is an alternative to a routine follow-up appointment which can be a source of stress and expense, and which you may not always find helpful unless you have a specific concern you wish to discuss with your healthcare professional.

How does it work?

If PIFU is suitable for you, your healthcare professional will discuss your condition with you and add your name to the PIFU appointment list. Instead of being given routine follow-up clinic appointments, you will be able to contact the service directly to arrange a follow-up appointment if you feel you need it. 

Your healthcare professional will then advise on the symptoms you need to watch out for and provide you with a guide card to help you decide whether you need to make an appointment because your symptoms have returned or got worse. If you experience any problems with your condition, or complications after treatment, please use the information on the guide card to contact the service to arrange a PIFU appointment. 

You will also be told how long you will stay on the PIFU waiting list as determined by your clinical condition. If you do not need to see the doctor or nurse about your condition within the specified period after your last appointment, you will be discharged back to your GP who will re-refer you if you need to be seen again in the future.

How do I book a follow-up appointment?

To book an appointment, call the the number written on your guide card and ask for a “patient initiated follow-up appointment”. If you have been given an email address on your guide card, please email us to request an appointment.

Please note, to arrange a patient initiated follow-up appointment you must: 

  • Have been told by your healthcare professional that this is appropriate for you and been given a personalised guide card.
  • Contact us within the timeframe advised by your clinician.

What if I have lost my guide card?

If you have lost your guide card, please don’t worry. You can contact the out-patient appointment centre on 020 7443 9757 and ask to be put through to the appointment booking team for the service looking after you. Their information can also be found on your appointment letter.

For more information, please download the patient initiated follow up appointment leaflet.