Patient Initiated Follow Up (PIFU)

As part of the Planned Care Improvement Programme, we have implemented the Patient Initiated Follow Up (PIFU) service. PIFU has specifically been designed for patients following surgery or treatment to allow them to access clinical teams if they feel they need to, rather than having a prearranged or regularly scheduled appointment.

The service helps to reduce unnecessary visits to hospital, reduce patient waiting times, reduce travel and parking costs and provide more flexibility for patients to choose when they require an appointment.

What is ‘patient initiated follow up’?

PIFU puts you in control. You can make an appointment to see us if you have any worries or concerns rather than having a regular or prearranged clinic visit.

PIFU is not suitable for everyone but your clinician will discuss your condition with you to assess whether this type of appointment is suitable.

Research has shown that having a regular or prearranged outpatient follow-up does not help to prevent your condition ‘flaring-up’ or identify new problems. In fact, many people find that follow-up visits to the hospital cause a lot of unnecessary anxiety.

What happens if I am placed on PIFU?

You will receive a PIFU patient letter after of your consultation that will provide you with all the information regarding when and how to contact.                                                                                    

This will also state the date when your PIFU is due to end.

At the end of the PIFU period, if you have not activated your pathway, you will be returned back to the care of your GP.

If you were seen in a virtual (video or phone call) appointment and were not given a paper copy of the leaflet, the information you need can be found on this page. Your clinic letter will also provide the arrangements around your specific PIFU and the dates that your PIFU period will end.

For all other concerns, or if you are feeling unwell, your GP remains your first point of contact.

If you require urgent medical advice, please contact call NHS 111 or go to

How do I book a patient initiated follow up appointment?

  • The service is quick and easy to use.
    Just call the number provided on your leaflet or call 01634 969800 we will arrange an appointment for you. Please note that the operator cannot give any clinical advice.
  • Please remember, it is important that you are available for your appointment. If you find you are unable to attend, please tell us in advance so we can try to give your appointment to someone else. Failure to do so may lead to you being referred back to your GP.
PIFU flow chart

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