- Specialist Services
- Arranging a Referral
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- Pet Blood Donor Sessions
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- 24 hour in-patient care
- Veterinary Professionals Referred Case Registration Form
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Willows Referral Service is pleased to be able to offer a comprehensive internal medicine service, fully supported by other specialists and support staff including those in our state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging facility, as well as others in our anaesthesia and soft tissue surgery teams.
We are happy to see any cats and dogs with internal medicine problems referred by veterinary surgeons and we aim to avoid ‘waiting lists’ by making additional appointments available as necessary in order to see urgent cases. We are very well equipped to deal with patients presenting with a wide variety of problems including those with acute or chronic gastrointestinal conditions, anaemia, bleeding problems, nasal disease, liver disease, simple or complex endocrine (hormone)problems, renal (kidney) and respiratory disease. We are also very happy to help dogs and cats with a wide range of cancers. Management for these cases often involves a team approach with our soft tissue surgery or orthopaedic teams. While neurology problems are seen primarily by the neurology team we often support them with any medical aspects of treatment. We also welcome any patient that does not readily fall into one of these categories, as so often occurs with medical problems!
At Willows we offer both urgent and routine medical appointments. During our standard 45 minute consultation we will review the clinical information available and results of diagnostic tests (laboratory work and imaging studies) performed prior to referral, take a detailed history, perform a physical examination and establish a problem list and prioritised plan with the owner.
Many medical cases will be admitted for further investigations and we are happy to be able to provide 24 hour care during any periods of hospitalisation. Wherever possible our patients will be discharged from the hospital by the clinician responsible for the case and always with a discharge report for the owner summarising the findings at that point, the treatment to be given and a clear plan for follow-up. Where patients are discharged with some diagnostic test results still pending, owners will be contacted by telephone and further diagnostic or treatment plans will be discussed in detail.
Whatever the nature of the case, we endeavour to ensure that owners find us sympathetic and approachable and that they feel able to discuss issues such as any concerns they have regarding pursuing invasive diagnostic procedures, the costs involved, and any concerns relating to prognosis (outlook) or quality of life issues. This fundamental approach can be especially important where the patient is elderly or the case is particularly complex.
Our veterinary nurses play a very important role in the internal medicine team, not only by caring for our patients but also by providing invaluable assistance during diagnostic procedures such as endoscopy. This exciting combination of expertise and facilities enables us to see a full range of cases from routine, stable chronic medical cases to the more urgent, acutely ill patients.
We are very happy to discuss any case with veterinary surgeons prior to referral where this would be helpful. We aim to send written reports to referring veterinary surgeons promptly after a patient’s discharge from our care, and final reports are issued with further test results and a management plan once these have been discussed with owners.
When a patient is hospitalised for a period of time we understand that veterinary surgeons may be keen for an update before the time of discharge and we are happy to give interim reports over the telephone. In the sad eventuality of a patient being euthanased with us or returning to the referring practice for this to be done, we will inform the referring veterinary surgeon by telephone as soon as possible once this decision has been made.
Whilst we are able to offer a multi-disciplinary team approach to our cases, we also focus on maintaining continuity of care for patients, owners and referring veterinary surgeons by ensuring that there is a designated clinician for each patient – good communication at every level is one of our key aims. Achieving good follow-up on our cases is also an important priority, and this benefits not only our patients, but also their owners, referring veterinary surgeons and our own clinical team.
We are always happy to see patients again for any follow-up required so that we are able to discuss ongoing treatment and diagnostic test results. Where direct follow up at Willows is not feasible then we are equally happy to support the referring practice in any way we can. Given the complex nature of some medical problems we encourage owners to contact us by telephone to provide progress reports for as long as we feel is necessary and/or as long as owners wish. Our policy is “if in doubt, call us”- we are always happy to take calls sooner than later if owners or referring vets are at all concerned.
If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us.