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The benefits of self-referral to access physiotherapy services

Accessibility and ease of access to healthcare services are paramount for timely assessment, treatment and recovery. This is especially the case when it comes to physiotherapy. Traditionally, patients seeking musculoskeletal (MSK) physiotherapy services would require a referral from a healthcare professional, typically their GP or hospital.

However, with the introduction of self-referral to physiotherapy care by Novus Health in the Wakefield district, numerous benefits are available for both NHS patients and the local healthcare system as a whole.

The benefits of self-referral to physiotherapy

Benefits include:

Streamlined Access: Self-referral in physiotherapy eliminates the need for a GP referral, streamlining access for patients. Instead of waiting for an appointment with their GP to firstly discuss their symptoms, hopefully followed by a referral, patients can directly access high quality physiotherapy services in Wakefield at Novus Health. This reduces unnecessary delays in receiving treatment, which is particularly crucial for musculoskeletal (MSK) pain where early intervention is essential to achieve the best outcomes.

Empowerment and Autonomy: By encouraging patients to self-refer to physiotherapy services, healthcare systems empower individuals to take control of their own health and wellbeing. Patients gain autonomy in managing their condition and can seek treatment and support based on their own needs and preferences. The shift towards patient-centred care promotes active participation in the decision-making process and fosters a sense of empowerment amongst patients.

Timely Intervention: In many cases when it comes to MSK pain, early intervention is key to preventing the progression of musculoskeletal conditions and promoting a quicker recovery. Self-referral enables patients to seek physiotherapy services promptly, without having to wait for a GP appointment. This timely intervention can help provide early advice and guidance, and assessment to establish a diagnosis so a management plan can be created. The earlier treatment and rehabilitation begin in MSK conditions, the less likely patients are to develop chronic pain, ultimately reducing the burden on the healthcare system.

Reduced Healthcare Costs: Bypassing the need for a GP appointment for a referral, results in cost savings for the healthcare system. Patients avoid unnecessary visits to the GP practice, which incurs costs for the local system. Fundamentally, early intervention through self-referral may result in shorter treatment and rehabilitation durations, with fewer appointments and fewer services involved, reducing overall healthcare expenditure for the local system.

Patient Satisfaction: Self-referral empowers patients to take an active role in managing their health, which can lead to increased patient satisfaction with their overall experience. Patients appreciate the convenience and accessibility of being able to directly access physiotherapy services without jumping over hurdles. Patients experience better outcomes through early access to assessment and treatment, allowing them to get back to their normal activities as soon as possible.

How to self-refer for physiotherapy in Wakefield

The adoption of self-referral to physiotherapy services in Wakefield represents a significant shift towards patient-centred care and empowerment. By providing streamlined access, autonomy, timely intervention, cost savings and enhanced satisfaction, self-referral offers numerous benefits for both patients and the local healthcare system. As healthcare continues to evolve, prioritising transformations that promote accessibility, efficiency and patient empowerment will be crucial in improving overall health outcomes.

To refer yourself to Novus Health for a physiotherapy assessment, call 01924 898784 or visit

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