1. Writing to invite the patient
Send the first letter of invitation for review. Ensure that it has been tailored to the patient's needs (See A.7: First letter of invitation).
2. Second invite to review
If the patient does not respond to the first, the second letter of invitation should be sent after the first month. Again, ensure that it has been tailored to the patient's needs (See A.8: Second letter of invitation).
3. Phoning patients/third letter of invitation
If the patient still fails to respond, they should either be sent a third letter (use the second letter of invitation on this webiste) or contacted by telephone. (See A.9: Guidance and checklist for phone calls). If a patient declines to attend an annual review meeting three times (with letters sent at least one month apart) the third letter may be used as evidence for recording an exception.
Please note there may be many reasons for non-attendance such as alcohol problems or psychological issues, and it is perhaps the patients that attend least that need the most support. It is therefore worth using these letters as part of a robust follow up to non-attendance.
Note on Read codes:In these cases it is possible to use the "informed dissent code"9h62 with a comment of "Letters sent on xx/xx/xx, xx/xx/xx and xx/xx/xx" to show that the practice has tried on three separate occasions, each a month apart, to get the patient into surgery for a review