While you wait


If you have been waiting over 40 weeks for treatment and do not have an appointment date within the next eight weeks, you could be eligible to request to move to a different hospital to be treated sooner.

Following COVID 19, we are working hard to reduce appointment waiting times for our services.

Myplannedcare shows average waiting times for each speciality in our hospitals. We see people based on urgency and how long they have been waiting, so you may be waiting a shorter or longer time.

While you are waiting for your hospital appointment or treatment, Whileyouwait provides information and advice about managing your condition, staying as well as you can.

You can also visit the national NHS website for more information about your condition and looking after your health and wellbeing.

Key information leaflet

Download a leaflet that summarises key information in seven different languages:

Watch this short video clip for information about why patients should ask their doctor or nurse about PIFU appointments.

What is Patient Initiated Follow Up?

You may see this referred to as ‘PIFU.’ It puts you in control. Research has shown that having a regular outpatient follow up does not help to prevent your condition returning or identify new problems. In fact, many people find that follow up visits to the hospital cause a lot of unnecessary anxiety.

Why have we introduced it?

Most patients with long term conditions, or following hospital treatment, do not require regular follow up by the hospital team. Traditionally you will have been given regular follow up appointments every few months and often will have attended when you are perfectly well. This is an appointment that could be given to patients that are acutely unwell. So PIFU is a way of empowering you to manage your own care and also gives other patients the chance of an earlier appointment.

Where have we introduced it?

We are starting to use PIFU in a number of specialties and all of our Care Organisations are working to introduce this as an opportunity for their patients wherever possible.

There are some specialties, however, where if may not be appropriate for patients to access PIFU due to the nature of their condition.

When did we introduce it?

We implemented PIFU in rheumatology for patients in Rochdale and Bury in February 2022. PIFU is also being offered to patients in two subspecialties in Opthalmology. The Trust is developing a programme across the NCA that will offer PIFU to the following specialties initially:

· Rheumatology

· Opthalmology


· Gastroenterology

· Orhthopadics

We will update you as we bring more and more specialties onto the programme.

How will it work?

This will depend on which specialty is currently looking after you as each will have a slightly different method of operation. In rheumatology you will be given a letter that advises you on when you should request a follow up and asks you to contact the rheumatology advice line initially.

Other specialties, including Opthalmology, will give you information and ask you to contact the main booking and scheduling service located at Rochdale if you feel you need an appointment.

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