Find out what to expect when you come to the older person's rapid access clinic (OPRAC).
Before your appointment
You are welcome to bring a family member, friend, guardian or carer to your appointment. Please dress in comfortable clothing and bring any medication you are taking. If you cannot bring all of your medications, a list of medications is fine. You are welcome to ask for a chaperone for your appointment and we will endeavour to provide one for you.
If you need transport to and from the hospital, please contact the clinic administrator on 020 3311 5162. Please see our transportation section for more information.
During your appointment
When you arrive at the hospital, please go to the clinical decisions unit where you will find the acute frailty unit and OPRAC. You will normally be asked to arrive in the morning and should expect to stay for most of the day. This is to provide for tests to be taken and results provided and reviewed over the course of the day. Meals are provided during your visit.
Our aim is to ensure all investigations and specialist opinions are sought on the same day to avoid you making numerous trips to hospital, although occasionally further investigations or reviews may be necessary.
During your visit, you may:
- be sent for a scan (eg x-rays, CT scan or ultrasound)
- see another specialist (for example a surgeon, a respiratory physician or a cardiologist)
- be reviewed by a social worker
- receive intravenous (into the vein – IV) therapy (eg blood transfusion, intravenous iron)
You will be greeted by a junior doctor who will take blood tests and talk to you about your problems. You will then be reviewed by the consultant at around midday. You will also receive a comprehensive multidisciplinary assessment including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, pharmacy review and specialist opinions where appropriate. A management plan will be laid out after the review. You should be seen by the first doctor within half an hour.
Please note that we are a teaching hospital, so medical students may be present for some appointments. If you do not wish to have them in the room please let the nurse or doctor know and the students will be asked to step outside.
After your appointment
You will usually go home the same day with a diagnosis and a management plan in place, which may involve a change to your medication or community rehabilitation.
We may refer you to another specialist team for further management. If you are acutely unwell we may recommend that you are admitted to hospital straight from clinic. The team will arrange this from the unit without the need to attend A&E.
You and your GP will receive a summary of the clinic visit including all test results within 48 hours and will be able to further discuss your on-going management. Do let the team know if you would like anyone else to receive a copy, such as other health professionals or a next of kin.
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