Coronavirus: speech and language therapy update
Due to increased demand on the hospital due to the COVID-19 pandemic we are having to make significant changes to our services which may require cancellation of appointments.
We are attempting to contact all patients with a future scheduled appointment.
In some cases we are changing appointments to a telephone consultation, and in certain circumstances, a video appointment. Some appointments may be cancelled without a future date being arranged at this stage. If we cancel your appointment you will remain on our waiting list and we will contact you in due course.
If you have not heard from us within three days of your scheduled appointment, please call the following number 020 7188 6233.
If you are an existing patient who has previously been seen in our service and need advice from the clinical team, please call 020 7188 6233.
See our frequently asked questions for further information. If your query is not covered, please call us.
We are doing everything we can to support GPs and your patients during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. If you need advice from our clinical team, please use the current advice and guidance channels including e-RS advice and guidance for written communication.
Advice and guidance
Prior to any referral, we would strongly advise that GPs to seek advice and guidance via e-RS or Consultant Connect (if it is available in your area). Please note that all of our services available on e-RS are set up for advice requests.
This will enable the clinical team to review your request and provide an interim treatment plan for ongoing management of a patient. They can also advise/provide clarification regarding a patients test results.
The GP can attach documents to the e-RS advice request, which may include diagnostic results, scanned images (eg ECGs). Providers can also respond with attachments.
If you need advice from our clinical team, please contact us by email at gst-tr.AdultAcuteSLT@nhs.net.
If you feel that a referral is absolutely necessary, please refer via e-RS and use the 'defer to provider functionality for urgent/two week wait (2WW) referrals. Please attach the referral letter at the point of referral or within 24 hours. For 2WW referrals, please ensure that the patient meets the criteria ahead of referring. Please do not refer urgent patients under 2WW as this will overwhelm the service.
The Trust will vet the referral and either book into a virtual appointment or add the patient to the waiting list if they need a face to face appointment. In some cases the referral may be returned (rejected) back to you with advice.
Please do not defer to provider routine referrals. Send the appointment request to the patient so they can do this when they are ready to book.
Please consider this before making any referral as our capacity to see new patients is very limited.
For any training issues or technical assistance with e-RS/Smartcards, please contact your local commissioning support unit facilitators or registration authority helpdesk.
For south east London GPs, your Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has commissioned the Consultant Connect service so you can also use this to seek advice. We are in the process of expanding our Consultant Connect lines – these will be available Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm and the communication will come via your local CCG bulletins. Please share this information within your practice.
Our frequently asked questions page has answers to common questions we have received from patients.
Speech and language therapist SarahCarrington with a patientWe offer a service to adults with swallowing, communication or voice disorders. We have specialists who help with:
- voice disorders
- rehabilitation after head and neck surgery, including surgical voice restoration after a total laryngectomy
- respiratory medicine and tracheostomy management
- stroke rehabilitation
- care of the elderly
- communication and swallowing problems arising from cancer treatment
Our inpatient service
Our staff care for patients on all of the acute inpatient wards. Referrals can be made by staff and we aim to see patients urgently referred to us in one working day and two working days for all other patients.
We also offer a fibreoptic endoscopc evaluation of swallowing service for inpatients at both hospitals.
Our outpatient service
We have an outpatient service at Guy's Hospital for voice patients. Head and neck cancer patients are seen at Guy's and in the community by the head and neck cancer team (CHANT). A small number of patients with acquired neurological disorders of speech and swallowing are seen as outpatients at Guy's and referred onto their local community team if they need ongoing care.
We offer videofluoroscopy clinics jointly with the radiology team to assess swallowing problems.
Laryngopharyngeal reflux advice video
You may have been diagnosed with laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR) by the ear, nose and throat team. Please watch the laryngopharyngeal reflux advice video on the Health and Care videos website, which explains the diagnosis and what you can do to improve your voice and throat symptoms. Please watch the video in Chrome.