Should GPs have direct access to imaging for children with urinary tract infections?
Polmear AF; Kenney IJ; Barnard SA Academic Unit of Primary Care, Trafford Centre for Medical Education and Research, University of Sussex, Brighton. BACKGROUND: All children with urinary tract infections (UTIs) should undergo imaging of the urinary tract. The Royal College of Radiologists currently recommends that such children should be referred to a paediatric specialist prior to imaging. AIM: To investigate whether direct referral of such children by general practitioners (GPs) for imaging offers advantages over the traditional approach. METHOD: Information on 100 children with UTIs, who were referred direct for imaging by GPs according to an agreed protocol, was compared with information on 100 children with UTIs referred initially to paediatric specialists. RESULTS: Protocol-guided direct referral resulted in less delay prior to imaging, no evidence of inappropriate referral (as judged by urinalysis and yield from imaging), greater consistency of follow-up arrangements, and a cons