Patient Services

The Gastroenterology Department offers a comprehensive range of in-patient and out-patient services.

In-Patients

The in-patient service consists of a 54 in-patient bed base located on 2 Wards [5X: 23 beds, Liver; 5Y: 31 beds Gen Gastro (incl..Liver)]. We look after 2400 in-patient per annum on the Gastroenterology Ward and in addition to performing approximately 500 ‘Internal Consultations’ per annum.

Out-Patients

We run 20 outpatient clinic sessions per week and a further 5 'virtual' clinics comprising of both general and specialist Gastroenterology and Hepatology patients (See Table 1). We service 5,000 new and 12,000 review patients per annum. All new appointments are seen within 7 weeks of referral currently and we are actively managing this with the aim of getting waiting times down to 2-4 weeks.  We are developing community network links to help manage chronic diseases.

To review our out-patient services please click here.

Endoscopy

The Endoscopy Unit at the Royal Liverpool is one of the most prestigious and productive units in the UK, for both training and the services it offers. We work 3 session days and 6 days per week. The unit houses one of the 3 national  training centres for Endoscopy in the UK (the only one based north of London). It is regarded as a Centre of Excellence and performs approximately 14,000 (of whom 4,000 inpatient, 10,000 OP or Day case) procedures per annum; Our diagnostic waiting times are all under six weeks (please see Endoscopy). The Mersey School of Endoscopy is a National Training Centre and runs 37 of which 22 “Hands on Endoscopy” including ERCP and EUS (see Mersey School of Endoscopy).

Other services offered include:

  • Diagnostic breath tests
  • GI physiology studies
  • Day care treatments, including venesection for haemachromatosis and administration of treatments for IBD.

Working Collaborations

There are several services with which the Directorate has very close working relationships:

Intensive Care Unit (ITU): 60% ITU admissions are medical of which 20% are GI related problems (GI haemorrhage, liver failure).  We are frequently asked to give advice on other categories of admission

Infectious Diseases & Genito-Urinary Medicine: we work in collaboration particularly with ID who have an in-patient facility on site.  We have agreed protocols and shared management strategies for patients with jaundice and hepatitis B or C.  The Nurse-led Hepatitis clinic is run jointly by our Nurse Consultant in Hepatology and the ID SpNurses.

Clinical Chemistry: is a large department with academic interests in nutrition and osteoporosis, both areas in which Gastroenterology have strong service links.

Dietetics: we avail of high quality dietetic support.  There is a dietitian assigned to Gastroenterology and through our Nurse Consultant in Nutrition we have strong links with the community dietitians.

Radiology: There are very strong established links with colleagues in Radiology.  Four Radiologists take a particular interest in GI and run our HPB and Upper GI MDTs.  There is a new and thriving Interventional Theatre Suite with 6 Consultant Interventionists.  We undertake TIPS and trans-jugular Liver biopsies for all nine hospitals in Mersey Region and a further 5 beyond.  Dr. Jonathan Evans, consultant radiologist, undertakes all of our tumour-RFA and also undertakes an ERCP and EUS list on our behalf.

GI Surgery: there are ten Surgeons specializing in GI – 2 Upper GI, 5 Colorectal and 4 HPB.  The Professorial HPB unit (Prof. John Neoptolemos) has a world reputation for research in pancreatitis and pancreas cancer and we are the Regional Pancreas center.  We share patients, undertake diagnostic and therapeutic procedures and collaborate in research particularly with this group. 

Medical Admissions Unit: 90% of our inpatient work is non-elective and almost all of these are admitted though a very successful Medical Assessment Unit.  This is run by 5 acute Physicians and the on-take system is supported by specialist colleagues in all Directorates: 40% patients are discharged within 48 hours from MAU.  There is a well established triage system to subspecialty and 85% patients are appropriately ‘housed’ on our wards.

Academic Medicine: We have strong links within the adjacent University campus is adjacent.  Four of our Consultant posts are HEFCE funded and we have a very active research programme in addition to collaboration with other academic departments, notably Surgery.  The Directorate was involved in successful collaborative bids to gain a Digestive Diseases Biomedical Research Unit (pancreas), and a Clinical Research Unit for trials.


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