Problem 2: Referral Rate varies

You did match Choice demand and capacity but the referral rate has risen and you haven’t flexed the capacity to meet it.

Solution: Flex the Choice capacity

Decide the number of weeks that you want all Choice appointments to be offered within. We choose six weeks in both of our teams but you may want more or less - ask your families / referrers / commissioners what they think. We can call this the ‘Choice Interval’

Then, each week, have an allocated member of staff, clinical or admin, perhaps for the team meeting, count the number of vacant Choice appointments in that interval.

You now need to know how many referrals you have accepted that week, so count these If you have less vacant Choice appointments available in the Choice Interval than the accepted number of referrals you will need to find that many extra over the next 6 weeks.

As a Choice appointment is a one-off, most staff can find one extra appointment in the next few weeks.