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Communicating with external agencies

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Communicating with external agencies

General practice does not work in isolation – patient pathways involve a range of interdependent healthcare workers and services, and good care needs good communication. In addition, all nurses are committed under the NMC code to work in partnership with patients to access health and social care.1

This resource, consisting of five assessment questions at intermediate level, tests your understanding of this requirement. Complete the resource, including the recommended reading and some or all of the suggested activities, to obtain a certificate for one hour of continuing professional development to include in your annual appraisal/revalidation portfolio.

Aims and objectives

After completing this module you will gained an understanding of:

  • Methods of communicating patient information effectively and safely
  • What personal health information is shared locally and nationally and whether people can choose what information is shared
  • How linking up with other agencies can make a real difference
  • What can – and does – sometimes go wrong, and how to limit it
  • How to help your practice stay well connected

Note: there is often more than one effective approach to improving communication. The ‘correct’ answers in this module are the suggested way forward, but several of the options might be appropriate.


1. Nursing and Midwifery Council. The Code, 2015.

Practice Nurse featured article

Communicating with external agencies Kate Hunt

Further reading

Rare Disease UK. Patient experiences of transition between care providers, 2014

Xyrichis A, Lowton K. (2008) What fosters or prevents interprofessional teamworking in primary and community care? A literature review. International Journal of Nursing Studies 2008;45:140–153

Further education on this topic:

Leadership Module – Education For Health

Essentials of Primary Care Nursing Workshops – Education For Health