Non-Obstetric Ultrasound Scan (NOUS)

An ultrasound scan is a medical procedure using high frequency sound waves to create a picture of a part of the inside of the body.

An ultrasound scan can be used to create images of organs, glands, abnormal lumps and other structures like muscles, tendons and joints.

As a non-invasive, painless and safe procedure, ultrasound scans have become an important widespread imaging tool since introduction and are commonly used by the NHS.

The NHS supports the need to develop improved access to diagnostic tests as part of the drive to reduce waiting times and improve choice options for patients. The need to develop community based diagnostic services is supported by the Royal College of Radiologists, Royal College of General Practitioners and Sir Mike Richards Report (DIAGNOSTICS: RECOVERY AND RENEWAL) as part of a service strategy to improve access to tests and ensure these tests are delivered at the right stage of the patient care pathway.

Key Service Outcomes

It is envisaged that a Direct Access ultrasound service will enable GPs to achieve the following benefits:

  • Offering patients rapid access to appointment by increasing capacity and choice and offering services closer to home.
  • Timely access to diagnostics for GPs and their patients to avoid the need for unnecessary referral to secondary care.
  • A reduction in inappropriate referrals through education and feedback to the referrer.
  • A reduction in unnecessary and duplicated diagnostics.
  • Better access and availability with evening and weekend appointments in response to patient demand.
  • A full integrated system to the NHS Spine offering directly bookable services on e-RS, achieving a fully managed referral pathway.
  • A reduction in waiting times for appointments.
  • Accurate, clear and timely imaging and narrative reports to the referrer.
  • Accurate and clear activity and KPI reporting including performance and quality to the commissioner.
  • High levels of satisfaction from patient accessing the service.
  • High levels of satisfaction from GPs referring into the service.

Diagnostic Healthcare has a long-standing track record of delivering ultrasound in community clinics. This is a consultant led service to ensure that all the clinical support is well embedded in the community setting. The ultrasound service is delivered by highly trained Sonographers who are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and follow a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programme. Diagnostic Healthcare continuously invests in the latest ultrasound technology to provide the best experience for its patients and staff.

The ultrasound service is commissioned as an “end to end” service making it as easy as possible for the referring clinician. The care, reporting and clinical pathways are developed and agreed locally to fit into the local Integrated Care Systems (ICSs).

Ultrasound FAQs

How long does an ultrasound scan take?

The ultrasound scan takes 15 to 30 minutes during which time you may be asked to change position to allow the area to be examined from different angles.

What will I feel during the ultrasound scan?

Ultrasound scans are a simple examination; they are non-invasive and are not painful. There may be varying degrees of discomfort from pressure as the transducer is pressed against the area being examined.

Are there any risks from the ultrasound scan?

For standard diagnostic ultrasound there are no known harmful effects on humans.

What does the equipment look like?

The ultrasound scanner consists of a console (computer), a video display screen and a transducer (probe) that is used to scan the body.

How and when will I receive the ultrasound scan / test results?

The ultrasound scan report will be sent to your GP or referring clinician usually within 24-48 hours of the examination.

Diagnostic Healthcare Ltd.
The Royals, 353 Altrincham Road, Sharston, Manchester M22 4BJ
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