Patient choice in healthcare – your right to choose
As an NHS patient you have a legal right to choose your hospital.
As an NHS patient you have a legal right to choose your hospital.
If you or a loved one needs to see an NHS specialist, you can choose to access any hospital or treatment centre in England. You could even switch hospitals, having already been referred somewhere, if you are waiting for too long. This patient choice is a legal right for NHS patients.
Patient choice in health and social care is the legal right of a patient to choose where they receive their treatment. In other words, if you need to be referred due to a mental or physical health condition, you have the legal right to choose which hospital or service you’d like to attend.
It is a patient’s legal right to choose where they receive their healthcare. Patients should be offered a choice of hospitals and services by their GP. This can include private hospitals. One of the main reasons that patients may ask to switch hospitals is waiting times. If their closest hospital waiting list is unsatisfactory, they can switch to a different one. Patients can ask to be referred to a different hospital if they have to wait longer than 18 weeks for non-urgent treatment.
According to the NHS constitution, patients have the right to choose their GP surgery and make choices about their health and care. Patients can also choose the organisation that provides their integrated care. They also have the choice of when they want to start their hospital treatment.
Patient choice is important because it gives you choice and control over your health and the decisions related to your treatment. The freedom to make an informed decision, and select the right choice for our individual needs, is important to a patient’s experience and recovery; both these things are better when we feel confident and comfortable with where we receive treatment.
Read our tips on choosing where to have your NHS treatment.
Promoting choice in health and social care can prove beneficial to both patients and resources.
First, patients benefit from understanding the care and support that’s available to them. This control over their healthcare can improve both mental and financial wellbeing.
Enabling choice also benefits healthcare professionals. Involving patients in decisions around their care helps to correctly allocate resources. This can subsequently alleviate the pressures on hospitals and services.
Thank you all so much for your kindness and efficiency, caring for me with my recent operation for gall bladder removal, I and my family so appreciate your hard work!
Dear Mr Brown, it is almost a year since you performed surgery on my second foot. The first operation being four years prior. I just wanted to write to say a huge thank you to you and all your wonderful team. Surgery has been completely transformative. My life returned to a much healthier lifestyle, long walks, gardening without pain and so much more fun! thank you so much.
Thanks for performing total knee replacement on me. Due to your excellent skills I am improving daily and leading an active life once again!
Thank you very much for my TWO successful hip operations at long last I am out of pain and recovering well. Many thanks to you and all your staff. Best wishes.
Thank you for taking such good care of me on 23rd November and putting me at ease.
I went for my cataract assessment today and found everyone very friendly and I was put at ease about the procedure. I feel very relaxed to know that I’ll be in good hands when the time for my surgery arrives.
I was very nervous at the start of my visit, but was absolutely amazed at the professional and caring service. The staff were so kind and helpful to make my experience worry free. The Surgeon was excellent and gentle, and I am so glad I had my eye surgery there. 100% a perfect day. Love to you all at PRACTICE PLUS GROUP GILLINGHAM.
Had to attend Practice Plus today and had an amazing experience. Staff are so caring and compassionate I would recommend to anyone. This was as an NHS patient.
My mum is 89 she was very frightened to have her cataract removed but when she got to the Gillingham practice from the start to the end she was made to feel safe with Mr R Govindan and the nurses on his team my mum is looking forward to having her other eye done
Thank you to all the team at Devizes for the great care they gave my dad when he came in for his cataract operation in March. The team were all very caring and efficient looking after him very well. Thanks for the many follow-up phone calls by the team making sure he was followed up by his GP on his return home. Thanks again.
Lovely people, kind and considerate to old fools such as myself (85). Very pleasant experience, considering l was petrified.
My wife recently had a cataract operation here and cannot fault the care and attention given to her by all the staff involved.
Had to have a tooth out and for someone who was terrified, everyone here made me feel more relaxed and comfortable and were excellent from start to finish with my treatment! Thank you. Highly recommend this place.
I can not speak more highly of the staff here. Everybody I dealt with and saw with others were incredible, be it the surgeon or bed chaperones.
This is the best hospital I have ever been in. The care and efficiency were excellent. My operation was conducted by a top class surgeon and anaesthetist who made me feel relaxed and secure. The team in the Kingfisher ward were kind and professional with good bedside manners and sense of humour. There were no delays in the treatment. My stay was made as comfortable as possible and I thank everyone involved. I am now recovering well.
Many thanks for repairing me, Mr Sadek, and making me whole again. After only a week I’m almost normal and fit again. Kind regards.
I very much appreciate the passion and attentiveness of you and your caring staff.
Huge thank you for taking such good care of my husband, Gary, who was in for a hernia repair. He made a wonderfully quick recovery and didn’t even need so much as a paracetamol! Thank you everyone for doing such a wonderful job!
I attended St Mary’s Treatment Centre on Sunday with my 7 year old daughter as she had broken her ankle and just wanted to feedback on our experience. The centre was exceptionally busy but every member of staff we encountered was amazing: positive, calm and just absolute stars! The situation could have easily felt really out of control with how busy it was but we were given regular updates to waiting times and to thank us for our patience. We were seen by a lovely woman on triage, the most smiley technician at X-ray and a doctor who took time to explain what was happening to my daughter. I just wanted to say thank you for everything you do.
I had an op today in Emerson Green and wanted to say how well I was looked after and cared for. Truly wonderful. Thank you
Big shout out to Practice Plus Group Plymouth who went above and beyond to make my day case visit today as comfortable as possible, from the day case nurses to all the theatre staff. Special mention to Carly, Cathy, Amy and Elaine(?) nothing was too much trouble!
Despite the most huge system demand, strikes and winter pressures the NHS still carries on, so grateful to Practice Plus Group for looking after me yesterday. You were incredibly slick, super friendly and got the job done!
The whole process was very quick and well organised from first contact to being discharged. The initial telephone contact allowed me to ask questions and be directed to the clinic which would best suit my needs. Everyone involved was very friendly and quickly put me at ease. I was always explained choices and not pressured into any response. My concerns were fully answered enabling me to feel confident to go ahead. I loved my consultants humour during the procedure keeping me involved and relaxed. My eyesight is amazing now with no need to wear glasses so I’m extremely satisfied.
Tremendous skill, diligence and care at this hospital. They deserve their reputation as one of the best facilities in the UK for hip and knee replacements.
Attended for a colonoscopy, superb care from Siobhan the receptionist through to Kemi, the lady who carried out the procedure and everbody inbetween, such care and dedication rarely seen these days. Thanks to all, you made a daunting afternoon much, much better!!!
Attended for cataract surgery and cannot fault the care I received from every single member of staff. Following a warm and friendly welcome at reception, pre surgery checks were carried out in a friendly, caring and professional manner with everything clearly explained – this carried through to the actual procedure where theatre staff were so kind and reassuring.
A big thank you to Mr Sadek and his team for the outstanding way they looked after me during my hernia surgery. Everyone was so friendly and polite and looked after me so well. Thank you all of you.
Appointments staff exceedingly courteous and helpful getting both my elderly parents booked in for appointments on the same day and directly after each other, for eye surgery.
Very impressed by this team. All appointments ran to time and all staff empathetic, skilful, kind and friendly. Thank you for all the team who dealt with my hernia surgery yesterday, it was a pleasure to meet you all. Great sense of team work and moral, and all communication and managing of expectations top notch.
The Endoscopy staff were fantastic put me at ease straight away. Dr Patel was so nice and what I thought was going to be a horrible experience wasn’t. Looked after all way through.
Had hip op recently. Big thanks to Mr Flood..Maria..and all the hospital staff they treated me with care ..respect thank you all for being there for me. Would recommended to everyone.
The service was excellent and all the staff were kind and considerate and helpful during my stay. It’s never nice having to have a operation but they made the experience a lot better and I was very impressed.
All the staff were amazing friendly and helpful. They were understanding, reassuring and kind. The receptionist, the dental surgeon and the dental nurse were all fantastic. I can’t thank you enough for how kind you all were.
I had a Partial Knee Replace at this hospital on the NHS. From start to finish my treatment by all was amazing. I cannot praise the care I had enough. The nurses are so friendly and caring. The hospital was very clean. A good choice of food. Highly recommend.
Staff were absolutely fantastic, really felt looked after. I was nervous about my procedure and the staff were reassuring and kind.
Procedure was smooth and painless. Many thanks all!
I recently had a total knee replacement operation at Shepton Mallett hospital, and there are not enough words to describe what an amazing place it is.
Everyone I came into contact with from the beginning of my referral has been so positive. So much care and compassion, I cannot thank you all enough you are all angels.
Had a cystoscope done this morning I could not fault the care and the support from Christopher and the nursing team thank you from an anxious patient.
I found the hospital to be very clean, staff could not be more helpful and Nurses and ward team so caring nothing to much trouble, food first class, would recommend this hospital. Thank you to all the staff.
I had the best experience ever for my hip replacement. Would highly recommend, thank you to all the staff involved throughout
I highly recommend Practice Plus Group! I had eye surgery yesterday and already can see clearly.
I went in for my new hip and was out within 3 days! The aftercare was also brilliant – 10/10!
I just wanted to thank everyone at your urgent treatment centre, the receptionist was lovely, we were seen very quickly despite it being very busy. Thank you again.
I had 2 cataract operations by the same surgeon and she was excellent! Both eyes are now perfect and operations went without a hitch! Aftercare was superb!
This was my 2nd time as an inpatient at Barlborough for knee replacement surgery and in my opinion you couldn’t have this surgery at a better place. It is truly outstanding.
I had a knee replacement in May 2022. I have to say that all of the staff from the consultant, the nursing staff and the entire team were absolutely wonderful.
I had a day case hernia repair yesterday and wish to thank all staff involved. Throughout the experience I felt reassured, fully informed and cared for.
Very polite and helpful staff at all levels. Friendly consultant who explained everything clearly. Extremely efficient x-ray department and choice of treatments.
I visited this walk in centre today and although there were quite a few people already there I was in and out in 15 minutes. They were very efficient and helpful.
Went here as a nervous patient. From the moment I arrived I was made to feel welcome and looked after extremely well. Practice Plus Group staff are just amazing and caring.
October 2020 I had total knee replacement, NHS referral. My experience was excellent…everyone was caring, listening and very professional.
Best dentist I’ve ever been to ! Had to have 2 teeth removed this week ! A very professional team took care of everything!
I would recommend Practice Plus Group and would use them again if I need to. So, so grateful to all of them.
Well organised from start to finish. Staff so friendly & reassuring. Excellent facilities & a really personal service provided.
The staff were so friendly & put me at ease. Lovely clean hospital.
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treatments carried out a month
or 'good' ratings by CQC
clean record for hospital acquired infections
of patients recommend Practice Plus Group