Choose and Book improves search function

The new version of the Choose and Book electronic referrals system will allow GPs to search for services using SNOMED clinical terms and colloquial language.

At present, GPs wishing to refer patients can search by type of service, named clinicians or by using a keyword.

But the new version of the software, available from 29 June, will scrap the keyword function. Instead, GPs will be able to search using SNOMED - the Systematised Nomenclature of Medicine Clinical Terms.

This will allow GPs to search using common names for conditions, as well as medical terms.

And it will make it easier for GPs to find services using symptoms, rather than requiring a definite diagnosis.

The new system will use predictive text, to offer a menu of options based on the letters a GP has typed so far.

It will also allow GPs to search for services specific to a patient's age or gender.

Dr Stephen Miller, the medical director for the C&B programme, said that this would prevent the system from proposing gynaecology services for male patients, or other similarly embarrassing suggestions.

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