HOSPITAL bosses are aiming to reduce waiting room congestion by slashing the number of follow-up appointments with specialists.

The move would mean patients facing fewer trips to hospital outpatient clinics after they are discharged from wards.

Trust bosses in Blackburn want to cut the rate of outpatient follow-ups to allow new patients to see specialists faster.

The trust board heard that the emphasis should be on "shared care" between the hospital and GPs.

The trust is working with GPs to reduce follow-up appointments.

GPs' representative Dr Chris Mowbray said: "We need to make sure that people who need follow-up appointments get them.

"Follow-ups are traditional and have happened down the years.

"It will benefit patient care to discharge patients from clinics at an earlier stage to keep waiting rooms a little emptier."

Trust medical director Dr David Grimes said hospital specialists and GPs were trying to establish a partnership of care.

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