North London Partners in health and care

Your choices for elective orthopaedic care


All patients have a right to choose where they have their care. This includes hospitals outside north central London, and private hospitals that provide this kind of care for the NHS.

This information is for patients living in Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey and Islington who may need planned, hospital-based, orthopaedic care or surgery including hip and knee replacements; and other surgery of hips, knees, shoulders, elbows, feet, ankles and hands and focuses on the hospitals in that area. 

The North Central London Elective Orthopaedic Network has been created to improve the care offered to patients. It is based on partnership working between hospital trusts.  Working together in this way means patients can receive timely, high-quality care. Clinicians from across hospitals will work together as a single team, have joint training and education, and hospitals can share their facilities, opening up access to more dedicated beds and operating theatres.

This short film explains your choices.  You can also download our leaflet, which is available translated into the most frequently requested languages. 

This film is available with subtitles

What options do I have? 

As a patient you simply need to choose which hospital you would prefer to go to for your outpatient appointments and follow up.

  • This hospital will be where the majority of your care happens. 
  • The team from this hospital will oversee all of your care, including any surgery, no matter where that surgery takes place.
  • Not all referrals result in surgery but if it is needed, your choice of hospital for outpatient appointments then determines where this surgery happens. It may be in a different hospital (see below). 

When your GP or physiotherapist refers you they will provide you with information about why you need to see a hospital specialist, and may be able to provide further detail about the type of treatment you might need. When choosing, think about what factors are important to you. These might include the places you receive other NHS care, the ease with which you can travel to appointments, the availability of parking or being close to home, where you work or to friends and family.

A summary of transport information can be downloaded from the documents list on this page.

You can also read information on the transport information page on this website.

Clinicians from UCLH and Whittington Health are working together as a team. You can choose to have outpatient appointments and any follow-up care at University College Hospital or The Whittington Hospital.

If you make this choice and need surgery:

  • Day surgery could take place at The Whittington Hospital or University College Hospital Grafton Way Building
  • Inpatient surgery will take place at University College Hospital Grafton Way Building

Clinicians from North Middlesex University Hospital and Royal Free London are working together as a team. You can choose to have outpatient appointments and any follow-up care at Barnet Hospital, Chase Farm Hospital, Edgware Community Hospital, Finchley Memorial Hospital, North Middlesex University Hospital or the Royal Free Hospital.

If you make this choice and need surgery:

  • Day surgery could take place at Chase Farm Hospital or North Middlesex University Hospital
  • Inpatient surgery will take place at Chase Farm Hospital

If your surgery is more complex, you may be referred to the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital. Your clinical team, GP or physiotherapist will discuss this with you. The care you receive will be of the same high quality, regardless of where you have it. You may be offered a video or telephone consultation for some appointments. 

If your surgery is more complex, you may be referred to the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust. Your clinical team, GP or physiotherapist will discuss this with you. 

Care co-ordinators

Care co-ordinators are non-clinical members of our team who are able to support patients throughout during their care. They are available for anyone having surgery, but may be particularly useful for patients with additional needs such as with a disability, dementia, or learning disability in ensuring that the right teams – for example clinical nurse specialists, are involved with their care. They can also support carers and family members.

They can help with practical things like information on how to get to appointments, arrangements for going home after surgery, ensuring that clinical teams are informed of any specific needs and also liaising with other teams involved in a patient’s care, including other health and social care services.

For all patients

Your appointments will be with a named surgeon, who, with their surgical team, will oversee your care, no matter where it takes place. Your medical records will be available wherever your appointments take place.

If you need surgery, it will take place in state-of-the-art facilities with access to high-dependency care if it is needed.

For hip and knee replacements, you will be offered pre-surgery education classes to help you understand your operation, prepare for surgery and rehabilitation support afterwards.

The clinical teams in each hospital will work together to give you the very best care and take advantage of the latest research and innovations available to the NHS

To minimise the chances of an operation being cancelled at the last minute and reduce the risk of infections, planned orthopaedic surgery has been separated from emergency care.