Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

Use of an Online Referral Service for Acute Neurosurgical Referrals: An Institutional Experience

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Oli Kennion, Melissa Gough, Patrick Mitchell


Full text for this publication is not currently held within this repository. Alternative links are provided below where available.


© 2022. Objective: We sought to review the current scope of emergency neurosurgical referrals and examine the long-term use of a web-based referral system. Methods: This was a single-center retrospective observational study. Referral information was collected retrospectively over a 1-year period after the implementation of a web-based referral system (June 2019–June 2020). Information such as demographics, clinical information, referrer details, and neurosurgical response times and outcomes were collected. Statistical analyses were performed using R Version 6.3.1. Results: Our unit received 5949 referrals with a median age of 63 years old (range: 0–107 years) (male = 50.3%). We observed an average of 16.3 referrals per day (range: 4–32), with Fridays having the highest average and the weekend days receiving statistically fewer referrals (P < 0.001). More than a third (35.9%) of referrals occurred within hours (8:00–17:00 Monday–Friday), with A + E making up approximately 50% of referrals. Common reasons for referral were traumatic brain injury, intracranial tumors, and degenerative spine. The median time from referral to first response was 32 minutes, occurring within an hour in 72.9% of cases. The median time to definite response was 83 minutes, occurring within 2 hours in 58.2% of cases. Factors found to impact the response time were referral emergency and time of day. Our acceptance rate over this period was 18.5%. Conclusions: With an increasing number of referrals, it is feasible to provide traceable advice in a timely manner through an electronic web-based referral system transferable to any specialty. Insights could be used to direct resources and workforce planning according to emergency referral patterns.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Kennion O, Jayakumar N, Kamal MA, Gough M, Paranathala M, Mitchell P

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: World Neurosurgery

Year: 2022

Volume: 165

Pages: e438-e445

Print publication date: 01/09/2022

Online publication date: 20/06/2022

Acceptance date: 14/06/2022

ISSN (print): 1878-8750

ISSN (electronic): 1878-8769

Publisher: Elsevier Inc.


DOI: 10.1016/j.wneu.2022.06.071

PubMed id: 35738533


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric