Children's Appointments
You may have been informed that you have been “referred” to a specialist service and are wondering what happens next.

A referral is the completion of a document which helps to gather information about you/your child so that the health professional is able to make sure you receive the correct service.

The service will “triage” the referral received to check all the information is available that they need and then add it to the waiting list or return it to the referrer, often because there is not enough information or that they are requesting the wrong service. Once on the waiting list, if you need to wait longer than 18 weeks (NHS standard), the service will contact you at regular intervals to keep you updated.

Many services have waiting lists, however, whilst waiting to see your health professional you can do many things to help:

  • Look at the website for your service, as you will often find information, ideas and top tips of what you can do to support your child, for example games to improve language development whilst waiting to see a speech therapist
  • Keep any changes to your address, mobile number and email up to date. If you are changing any of these go on the website for the service you are waiting for and into “how to contact us” – call them with your change of details
  • Before your appointment check Blackpool Hospital’s website for Covid precautions and information, you can also check any signs as you enter buildings too for the latest Covid advice. Remember if you, your child or a member of your family has any symptoms please stay at home and contact the service


1 in 5 patients accidently miss their hospital appointment simply because they forget when it is

We appreciate how busy people are and how easy it can be to forget an appointment or mislay an appointment card; however, patients not attending their appointments result in to long waiting lists. Each missed appointment costs the Trust money but more importantly, it means that the slot cannot be offered to another patient.

It has been shown that sending appointment reminders significantly reduces the number of missed appointments. Therefore, children’s community services are now providing text reminders 7 days and 48 hours before your child’s appointment with the option of requesting to re-book. There is no cost to families to receive or reply to the text reminder service – we encourage all families to use it and to also update the service of any changes to phone numbers, addresses and emails.