Rapid Access Centre - Paediatrics

About the Service
This service provides a rapid referral for children who have been seen by their GP and who require an urgent opinion from a paediatrician but not necessarily hospital admission. This clinic will allow ill children to be seen by a paediatrician very promptly, avoid attendance to A&E and, in some admissions, to hospital.

RAC is a once a week out-patient clinic run by a Paediatric Registrar under the supervision of a Consultant. General Practitioners access the RAC by discussing the case with the Paediatric Registrar (or Attending Consultant) and then faxing a supporting letter. The child is seen in the next available slot. We expect to see all children booked into the RAC within a few days. After the child has been seen, a letter is given to parents and one sent to the referring GP.

Referral Criteria

Children who need early assessment and can’t wait for a routine out-patient appointment.

Exclusion Criteria

Children with acute illness will be seen in Paediatric A&E for assessment and further management.


Children seen in RAC will have access to:
  • Pathology
  • Imaging
  • ECG and Echo

How is a referral made?
  • GPs have all the relevant details for the referral pathway
  • Referral will be made directly by fax to the Children’s out-patient department.
  • All referrals will be made via the Paediatric Registrar.
  • Children will be booked into the next available RAC and parents will be informed by the Paediatric out-patient reception staff.
  • Once children have been seen in the RAC, their GP and parents will be sent a discharge letter. Follow-up appointments will be arranged as necessary.