Aim: To assess the attitude of patients to receiving a copy of vascular outpatient clinic letters.
Method: 100 patients attending an outpatient vascular clinic at Christchurch Hospital were sent a copy of their outpatient letter along with a questionnaire. This gathered information on the content of the letter, their understanding of it, how useful they found it and whether they would want this practice to continue.
Results: The response rate was 68%. Ninety four percent of the responders believed receiving a copy of the letter was a good reinforcement of the information they received at the consultation. Ninety three percent of responders also found being copied into correspondence helpful and 96% understood the contents of the letters. Ninety seven percent wished to receive more letters in the future.
Conclusion: These results suggest that vascular surgery patients both value and understand clinic letters, and that health professionals should consider adopting this practice into their vascular outpatient clinics.
Copyright 2009 European Society for Vascular Surgery. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.