The delivery of surgical cleft care in the United Kingdom

A.C. Williams, D. Bearn, J.D. Clark, W.C. Shaw, J.R. Sandy

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Background and purpose: A national survey of cleft teams was undertaken as part of the Clinical Standards Advisory Group investigation of the current status of cleft care in the United Kingdom (UK). Methods: Fifty-seven cleft teams were identified, of which 90% responded to the survey. Main findings: Nine cleft teams had been established since 1992. Only one region, Northern Ireland, had a centralised cleft service and, despite 82% of teams having databases, only four were able to produce corroborated evidence of receiving at least 30 annual new referrals during 1995. There was a wide variation in the facilities provided by individual cleft teams - only six teams were able to provide all of the key facilities recommended by the Royal College of Surgeons Steering Group on cleft lip and palate. Facilities such as antenatal and neonatal counselling, protocols for record keeping and long-term treatment were similar for high and low volume teams. High volume teams were more likely to have established links with a full range of specialties including psychology, clinical genetics and paediatrics than low volume teams. Conclusion: A national survey of cleft services has demonstrated a need for reorganisation. This is now in process and once established will require continual monitoring and assessment.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)143-149
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh
    Volume46
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2001

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