GP colleagues will be aware that one of the first services to formally merge, as part of the Luton & Dunstable/Bedford merger, will be pathology.
Coinciding with the end of the Viapath contract at Bedford, we will be reintroducing an NHS-led, combined pathology service across both sites.
We believe this is a very exciting opportunity to bring together the best of two departments and ensure we are well-placed for the future to offer the very best service.
Ensuring that we continue to provide a high quality service for you as GPs (as one of our key partners) is a top priority and we will be doing everything possible to ensure that there is minimal disruption, however, it is a complex project, so we will be hugely grateful for your understanding while we transition over the next 18 months or so.
Change to Pathology Merger Date – Tuesday 28th April
2/3/20 – We have an important update for all colleagues working in primary care relating to the formal merger date of the pathology service.
The original target date for the launch of the new merged service was 1st April.
Due to the scale of investment and improvements being delivered – namely the installation of state-of-the-art analyser machines – and the need for us to fully test these systems (with both internal and external users); we have taken the decision to reschedule the formal merger for Tuesday 28th April.
This means that you should continue to do as you do now – as there will be no changes implemented until that time.
Those GP surgery colleagues who are helping us with the ‘end-to-end’ testing – we’ll be in touch separately to discuss the scheduling.
We will be providing a summary of information to all users, both internal and external, about what will stay the same and what will be different following the merger. We will circulate this as soon as we possibly can, in advance of 28th April, to provide everyone due notice.
We will also be continuing to visit key meetings (for example Primary Care Networks) where we will be available to answer your questions and discuss any concerns that you may have. One question which has come up often so far is with the ICE system – to reassure you, the ICE system will remain in place.
Another question has been on the courier service. We are changing provider from 1st April for L&D practices and 28th April for Bedford practices. The routes and times will stay the same. But we would appreciate practice staff being aware, as the new company, eCourier, wants to check the routes and introduce themselves in the near future.
Frequently Asked Questions
We have started to produce a Frequently Asked Questions document, aimed at GPs and Primary Care colleagues – the aim of which is to deal with any questions or issues you may have.
If you have any more queries, please raise these by contacting [email protected] and we will keep updating the Frequently Asked Questions document.