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New text reminder service for elective patients


Patients awaiting a planned procedure at Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust can now take advantage of a free text message reminder service.

Patients at Scunthorpe, Grimsby and Goole hospitals, who have a mobile number on their records, will be automatically opted into the service.

SMS alerts have been used for outpatient appointments since 2014 but are now being rolled out for elective (planned) procedures including surgery.

Patients will receive two text messages, one seven days before their surgery and one two days before. The text will remind them the date and time of the appointment and the hospital site to attend.

When patients don’t turn up for their appointment it gets classed as a ‘Did Not Attend’ (DNA) and leads to a surgery slot being unused.

Ryan Sutton, senior improvement project manager, said: “We will be offering this service to all patients that we have an active mobile number for. We would encourage anybody who is awaiting treatment ensures we have their up-to-date mobile number so they can take advantage of this service.

“We know from talking to our patients that the majority of those that fail to turn up for their appointment do so because they simply forgot. Hopefully this new service will see a reduction in the number of patients that fail to turn up.

“Please do let us know if you can’t make it to your appointment so we can offer it to somebody else.”

Patients wishing to opt out of the service can do so by following the instructions on the text message.


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