Other sources of help

Information about NHS services

For more information about NHS services available to you, health advice and information, well-being and informed decision-making about health-care providers – see  the NHS Choices website.

Also, for detailed information on local health services, including quality standards and maximum waiting times contact your Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)), the list of those in Norfolk are here:  Norfolk CCGs.  Or try the local Norfolk Healthwatch  or hospital-based Patient Advice Liaison Service (PALS) found via NHS Choices

The NHS constitution

Some of your rights as an NHS patient are set out in the NHS constitution. See this guide to the NHS Constitution A copy of the constitution itself is on the Department of Health website at: www.dh.gov.uk.

The Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission checks all hospitals and providers of primary health services (for example, GPs and dentists) to see if they are meeting government standards. See http://www.cqc.org.uk to find out about what to expect from them. You can also give feedback about the standard of care you received, but individual complaints cannot be dealt with.

Alternative therapies

Some private treatments will include alternative therapies. Alternatively your GPs may be qualified in some alternative therapies themselves and may offer these as part of their NHS treatment. In some areas GPs may be able to refer a client to alternative practitioners, but this will not always be available – check with your GP.

 Private treatment

  1. If you want to pay for a treatment privately because it isn’t available on the NHS, your NHS care will continue to be free of charge. The NHS cannot pay for or subsidise your private hospital treatment. Your private hospital treatment must be given separately from your NHS treatment. For more information click here

  2. It is possible to seek private treatment from a consultant or specialist without being referred by your GP. However, the British Medical Association (BMA) believes that, in most cases, it is best practice for patients to be referred for specialist treatment by their GP.

  3. If your GP thinks you need specialist treatment and you want to pay for it privately, if they think it is appropriate they can write a letter of referral to a private consultant or specialist explaining your condition and your medical history.

  4. If you have private medical insurance,insurance companies usually require a letter of referral - some companies will accept GPs’ referrals to consultants, while others have their own lists of consultants.Before claiming you will need to check this, and also see if your policy covers the treatment that you need 



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