Information and resources about how to refer patients to MidCentral Health services.
Referral Type and Action
Urgent or acute referrals are those that need to be seen immediately for assessment and treatment at the Emergency Department
or via acute clinics e.g. General Medicine Acute Assessment Clinic, Gynaecology Unit, Antenatal Unit, Elderly General Geriatric, Psycho-geriatric, Children’s Assessment Unit.
These referrals may be made by telephone to the discipline registrar on duty or on call.
Where a referral is made by phone it is preferable that a written referral follows.
A written referral should be given to the patient to bring to the Emergency Department.
Diagnostic referrals are those that require a diagnostic test/
intervention to confirm or exclude provisional diagnoses.
Specialised Nursing and Allied Health referrals are those that require assessment and/or treatment that is unable to be reasonably provided by the GP or practice nurse. Services are provided in an outpatient or community setting.
All referrers must provide the following information on all referrals:
This can be done by using the MidCentral Health referral form obtainable free, by phoning the MidCentral Health Distribution Centre - 06 350 8878, or by using your own letterhead.
A referral that does not meet the minimum essential requirements will not be accepted. These requirements match those of the National Generic Referral Letter.
- Name in full (Family and all First Names)
- National Health Index (NHI) number
- Residential and postal address
- Home and alternative phone numbers
- Date of birth
- Presenting clinical history and relevant past clinical history
- Physical and psychological findings
- Response to treatment
- Allergies and alerts
- Social situation
- Investigations (include date and result)
- Medical practitioner’s demographics, date, signature, phone and fax
- Specific referral information for the speciality.
Include if known or relevant:
- Past and present occupation and present employer
- Residency status
- Contact person/advocate name, address and phone number
- Previous attendance at a public hospital.
All accident related referrals must contain the following information:
- Date of injury
- A copy of the ACC 45 including signature and diagnosis
- Work or non work related injury
- Read code, site and type of injury
- Prior approval by the ACC Case Manager if the injury >7 days
- Past and present occupation and present employer.
Where a referral is being made to a service and the reason for referral is as a result of an accident the patient can be referred to a Specialist in their private capacity.
Urgent or Acute Referrals:
Referrals for patients requiring acute assessment may be faxed or sent with the patient to the Emergency Department
or via acute clinics e.g. General Medicine Acute Assessment Clinic, Gynaecology Unit, Antenatal Unit, Elderly General Geriatric, Psycho-geriatric, and Children’s Assessment Unit.
Non Acute or Arranged Referrals:
Must be addressed to the specialty or service rather than the individual specialist and forwarded to the Ambulatory Care Centre using the teal envelope available free by phoning the MidCentral Health Distribution Centre.
Specialised Nursing and Allied Health:
Primarily Allied Health, Therapy and Specialised Nursing Services
Central Referral Management Rehabilitation Service
Palmerston North Hospital
Private Bag 11036
Palmerston North 4442
Phone: (06) 350 8182 or 0800 741 222
Fax: (06) 350 8122
All other services including diagnostics not in the above groups
Each service description includes a destination for referral.
Where referrals are sent to an incorrect destination they will be
GPs will receive the following information electronically via the
Regional Clinical Information Network (RCIN) on a daily basis:
Within 10 working days – date of receipt, specialist name and priority
Appointment date when scheduled
“Did not attends” and cancellations
NB: Where diagnostic tests are required before the first specialist appointment the specialist will arrange these at the time of prioritising the referral.
The following process will also occur:
Within five working days – referrals that do not meet the minimum essential information requirements will be returned to the referral source.
Patients will receive the following information by letter:
- Within 10 working days – date of receipt, specialist name and optional information that may include appointment details, pre tests required and preadmission information.
- Patients categorised into Active Care and Review (ACR) will receive their plan of care.
Elective Services Information
at MidCentral Health follow Ministry of Health guidelines. The Ministry of Health defines elective services as hospital services for people who do not need immediate medical treatment. If you are very ill and require emergency treatment you will be treated with minimal delay.