What is the Bupa Open Referral Network?

The Open Referral Network puts choice in patients' hands.

In an open referral a patient s GP will decide the speciality of the consultant that a patient needs to see rather referring them to a specific consultant. Some of our policies and schemes are based on this referral pathway. Using information from the GP, we'll offer patients a choice of up to three consultants or therapists with the appropriate medical expertise.

Consultants who treat patients with open referral policies need to meet our criteria covering:

  • Cost of care
  • Clinical practice
  • Patient experience

What are the benefits to consultants?

When you join the Open Referral Network, you'll enjoy these benefits:

What are the benefits to Bupa patients?

When you join the Open Referral Network, patients experience more benefits too.

How do I become an Open Referral Network consultant?

To become an Open Referral Network consultant you need to meet the following criteria:

Open Referral Network consultants also need to meet criteria specific to their speciality:

* Where we use criteria developed in the NHS (such as NICE guidance) we risk adjust for case mix because NHS hospitals are more easily comparable due to their more standard case mix, unlike private hospitals where there could be wide variation.

How do I join the Open Referral Network?

You'll automatically be added to the Network if you meet our criteria. We'll also write to you and let you know.

We use peer-group, risk-adjusted comparisons with other Bupa recognised consultants in the same speciality and sub-specialty to see whether you can join the Network.

We get this information from:

  • Your invoices and those of your peers
  • Hospitals and clinics providing treatment and care to Bupa patients

This method gives us high level information about consultants Bupa practices. Invoices may not include details like whether you provide specialist treatment or accept tertiary referrals. That's why we'll always get in touch.

We work with over 20,000 consultants across the UK, so we review one speciality at a time, about every two years.

Our method for choosing Open Referral Network consultants has been independently verified to make sure it is rigorous and fair.

Looking for more information?

If you have any queries about the Open Referral Network you can email us. Alternatively, find out what other consultants benefits we offer.

Health Professionals Privacy Notice (PDF, 0.2MB)

Bupa health insurance is provided by Bupa Insurance Limited. Registered in England and Wales with registration number 3956433. Bupa Insurance Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Arranged and administered by Bupa Insurance Services Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England and Wales with registration number 3829851. Registered office: 1 Angel Court, London, EC2R 7HJ. ©Bupa 2023

Content is loading