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Continuity of care - tips for Junior Doctors

  • September 07, 2018

Continuity of care for patients is fundamental because going into hospital can be an overwhelming experience - you want reassurance that the doctors and nurses know your name, can explain what is happening and there is “someone in charge” to answer your questions and worries.

Patients can often be moved between different wards, sometimes in the middle of the night and usually without informing the patient or carers in advance.

Poor communication between staff and inadequate handovers across shifts result in patient details and vital information being lost, forcing patients and carers to repeat the same information to numerous people.

Doctors are therefore expected to have thorough knowledge of each patient’s inpatient journey, to ensure that every medical professional who wishes to follow the patient up has made arrangements to do so.

Therefore, in today’s post we provide you with some tips on successfully executing excellent continuity of care.


  1. Ensure the patient and their carers understand the follow up plan. This will reduce their anxiety, empower the patient and their partners to be champions in their own health care and increase their likelihood of attending appointments.
  2. Provide accurate and comprehensive information in discharge summaries. This is a fundamental component of continuity of care that helps to ensure that the patient’s GP is aware of new diagnoses and any changes to medications.
  3. Liaise with the specialties planning to follow-up a patient to ensure appointments are made.
  4. Communicate with each member of the multi-disciplinary team to ensure timely discharge. This is especially important for junior doctors, as they will be the primary member of the medical team who is most commonly on the ward, a junior doctor is in the perfect position to co-ordinate between the different levels of professionals involved.

If you are an IMG who is interested in relocating to the UK and working within the NHS send your CV to [email protected] and we will be in touch.

Join our Facebook Group IMG Advisor – here you will have access to frequent blog posts on relocating to the UK and working within the NHS, the opportunity to ask questions and receive professional guidance and the chance to meet other IMGs.


Medical professionalism and regulation in the UK. (2018). Good continuity of care: four top tips for junior doctors. [online] Available at: [Accessed 5 Sep. 2018].


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