Care of IBD patients compromised by poor communication between primary and secondary care

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: (Published 12 April 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e2675
  1. Ingrid Torjesen
  1. 1London

Patients who experience a relapse of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are not being referred to hospital as quickly as they should be, according to a survey by the Royal College of Physicians.

GPs told researchers that they want patients who consult with renewed symptoms of ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease to be seen in hospital within seven days, but 59% of the 1675 respondents admitted that such speedy access was not available.

Half of GPs indicated that they either did not know whom to contact in secondary care when they required help and advice on IBD or that the lines of communication were slow. Many GPs were unaware of the existence of IBD …

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