Frequently Asked Questions
Please refer to these frequently asked questions that should address common queries regarding the forms.
When were the forms launched and how do I access them?
The referral forms were originally launched in April 2016. Adaptions were made to some forms during the pandemic and all forms were updated to include SNOWMED coding in 2021. All the forms have been updated and re-launched in January 2023. Versions of the forms are available in EmisWeb, SystmOne, Vision, MS Word and DXS Point of Care.
The forms have been uploaded to the IT system that you use by DXS Point of Care, your IT provider or IT Leads. If you are a GP practice within the following boroughs, DXS Point of Care have uploaded the referral forms centrally to your practice’s IT system: Lambeth, Bexley, Kingston, Richmond, Herts Valley, Southwark, Croydon, Lewisham and Greenwich. Local arrangements are in place for SystmOne forms across North West London (Central London, West London, Hammersmith & Fulham, Hounslow and Ealing) and Vision practices in Lewisham and Greenwich.
Downloadable forms for dental and ophthalmology services will be available here in due course.
Please use Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Firefox when downloading the forms. Older Internet Explorer versions may not allow you to download the forms. If you are having problems please contact Transforming Cancer Services Team at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send you the forms electronically.
What are ways to avoid common technical problems experienced by practices using the USC referral forms?
Check your computer RAM capacity:
- Sometimes issues that appear to be with EMIS or SystmOne could be caused by low power or low specification computers
- For users with consistent issues, check the RAM capacity in their workstation (4Gb is insufficient, 8Gb is adequate, 16Gb is ideal)
Check how many other programs are running concurrently:
- If the RAM is fine and there are still issues, it could be down to an abundance of other software running at the same time, so a review of the workstation’s resources may be necessary.
Remove / archive out of date or unused content from within the clinical system:
- It is important that only the latest USC referral forms are used after 31 January 2023
- If the issue is specifically and only when merging large amounts of data into merge-field Word documents, we have heard anecdotal instances of large volumes of content items in a local EMIS or SystmOne library (e.g. template, protocols and reports) being the cause. This has reportedly been fixed by removing or archiving any out of date or unused content from within the clinical system.
What is the E-Referral System (e-RS)?
The e-RS (previously known as Choose and Book) is the preferred booking method for suspected cancer referrals. A national standard set by NHS England states that by October 2018 all first consultant led appointments (including Urgent Suspected Cancer referrals) should be booked via e-RS. The e-RS improves reliability and patient safety which is consistent with good practice, as well as improving patient experience. If e-RS is not available then referrer should email the referral form to the provider using the directory at the top of each referral form.
Where are the trust contact details to make the referral?
Embedded at the top of each referral form is a web link providing the full list of trusts, email addresses and additional contact information. The preference of the web link in comparison to a long list of hospitals is that it is managed centrally, ensuring that the web link as up to date as possible. Each tumour type form has its own customised set of contact details relating to that specific cancer type as not every trust operates each cancer services.
What do I do if I can’t download the referral forms or make email referrals?
In the first instance we recommend contacting your borough Cancer and IT lead or your local service desk.
For technical issues please contact your IT system’s customer support or helpdesk
EMIS Web: www.emisnow.com/csm
Vision England LAN practices: 0845 351 1820
Vision AEROS hosted practices: 0845 359 3544
SystmOne: 0113 20 500 95
DXS Point of Care: 0800 028 0004 / email@example.com
If you are continuing to have problems please contact TCST at firstname.lastname@example.org and the forms will be sent via email to you.
I have a query regarding the referral forms, who do I raise this with?
In the first instance please contact your borough’s Cancer / IT lead or your IT service desk. For technical issues please contact the relevant IT system’s helpdesk using the information above. Even though the forms have been extensively tested, if you come across issues in terms of the content of the forms, or if you have any other questions, please get in touch with the Transforming Cancer Services Team at email@example.com.