Skip to navigation Skip to content
Sulis hospital bath banner

NHS patients

Many NHS patients are surprised to hear that they can be seen and treated at a private hospital.

Patients in England can choose where to have their hospital treatment. You can choose to receive your treatment at Sulis Hospital Bath by using the NHS e-Referral service. Prompt, high-quality treatment is important to everyone.

We’re delighted that you’ve chosen Sulis Hospital as your healthcare provider – we are experts in diagnostic treatment services for both NHS and private patients.

We are part of the Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust offering elective treatment services. Through this unique partnership, we can provide patients with the highest level of care and benefit the whole community. Our experienced clinical team will treat you quickly to get you feeling better sooner. The majority of consultant surgeons at Sulis Hospital have substantive contracts at the Royal United Hospital Bath, ensuring continuity of care for our patients.

There are two NHS pathways to treatment at Sulis Hospital - NHS e-Referrals and the RUH Elective Care pathway for orthopaedic patients.

How to book an NHS appointment

NHS e-Referral allows you to choose and book your first outpatient appointment at hospitals and clinics across England. You’ll need:

  • booking reference number password or access code provided by your referrer.

You can book through the NHS website or the NHS App. Using the app allows you to view or change your first outpatient appointment.

Sulis entrance 01

Here at Sulis Hospital, we've established a Surgical Hub for some operations and procedures. Getting it Right First Time (GIRFT) teamed up with the Patients Association to understand what works best for patients referred to a surgical hub or transferred from a trust to a surgical hub for their operation.

In this video, it explains what is involved if you choose to have your surgery at a surgical hub and patients share their experiences.

For information on patient choice, your can you can visit NHS England. NHS treatment is free of charge at point of delivery.

Patients who have elected to have orthopaedic surgery at the Royal United Hospital Bath may be transferred to Sulis Hospital for their surgery on a new pathway.

For elective surgery - that is, surgery you have chosen to have rather than emergency care - you can be treated at Sulis Hospital.

We are part of the Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust offering elective treatment services – this helps relieve pressure on a busy acute NHS hospital.

You will be pre-assessed at the Royal United Hospital Bath before transferring your care to Sulis Hospital.

The length of stay for orthopaedic patients ranges from same-day to discharge on day two. Your post-operative care will be managed through the Royal United Hospital or in the community.

The RUH elective orthopaedic pathway is a different pathway to the e-Referrals pathway detailed below.

Since 2006 every patient in the country has had the right to choose where they are treated under a system now called e-Referrals (previously known as Choose & Book). Sulis Hospital Bath welcomes NHS patients through this system no matter where they live in England.

We work with our local NHS Trust Hospitals to help reduce waiting lists. It costs the NHS the same amount whether you are treated at an independent hospital or at an NHS Trust hospital. The solution takes the pressure off nearby hospitals, doesn’t cost patients or the NHS anymore, and waiting times get shorter. You have the right to consider your choice and compare the different options as not all hospitals are the same.

Your GP surgery will provide you with a referral letter and your unique NHS booking reference number (UBRN). In some cases, you will be referred by your GP to your local Clinical Commissioning Group's Referral Support Service. The Referral Support Service advisors will discuss your options with you at which stage you can ask to be referred to Sulis Hospital Bath.

If you choose to come to Sulis Hospital Bath, you will be offered a choice of clinic times including some weekend and evening appointments, fast access to some of the best specialist doctors, and the reassurance that you will benefit from some of the best consultant-led care available.

Your pre-operative and post-operative care will be managed through Sulis Hospital.

Sulis Theatre

These are the clinics currently offered to NHS patients at Sulis Hospital through e-Referrals.

  • Colorectal Clinic
  • Cataract Clinic
  • Elbow Clinic
  • Eyes - Oculoplastics, Orbits and Lacrimal Clinic
  • Foot and Ankle Clinic
  • General Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic
  • Gastroscopy Clinic
  • General Surgery - Lap Chole (gallbladder)
  • General Surgery - Lumps and Bumps Clinic
  • Gynaecology Clinic
  • Hand Surgery Clinic
  • Hernia Service Clinic
  • Hip Clinic
  • Knee Clinic
  • Shoulder Clinic
  • Spinal Clinic
  • Urology Clinic
  • Vascular Clinic

Certain medical exclusion criteria apply.

Sulis Hospital Bath aims to treat all patients reasonable timeframe.

Initial outpatient consultations are usually available within a few weeks for most NHS e-Referral clinics. This means that you will receive treatment a consultant diagnosis and have clarity on the next stages of your care.

How to be referred

As an NHS patient, you can ask your GP to refer you to Sulis Hospital Bath through the e-Referrals pathway.

You may be able to book your appointment whilst in the GP surgery but in the majority of cases you will receive a letter from your GP listing the choice of hospitals and giving you your unique booking reference number.

You can then book your appointment online or over the phone, asking for a time and date that is convenient for you.

If Sulis Hospital Bath is not given as a choice in the letter from your GP, please contact us at 01225 985 200 or email

You can ask to be transferred to Sulis Hospital Bath if you are on a long waiting list at another hospital. To do this you need to go back to your GP and ask to be re-referred to Sulis Hospital Bath.

We aim to treat patients within 18 weeks however the majority of patients are treated in shorter time frames. Initial outpatient consultations are usually available within a few weeks and treatment within 8 to 10 weeks for most NHS clinics.

The NHS Constitution (March 2013), gives patients the right to access certain services commissioned by NHS bodies within maximum waiting times, or for the NHS to take all reasonable steps to offer you a range of suitable alternative providers if this is not possible.

We can help you manage the transfer of your care to Sulis Hospital Bath.

Privacy notice

The award-winning Sulis Hospital Bath is approved by the Department of Health to offer services under the NHS e-Referrals programme.

Procedures are carried out in state-of-the-art operating theatres and Sulis Hospital Bath is proud of its zero-incident track record of hospital-acquired MRSA bloodstream and C.difficile infections.

Safety is our number one priority.

Fast track your treatment

Just enter your details below and we'll ring you to provide a quote or answer your questions. We will use your personal information to process your enquiry and contact you with relevant information.

We would like to provide you with marketing information about products and services offered by Sulis Hospital Bath and by selected third-party partners. If you do not consent for us to process your personal data for marketing activities, we will still be able to contact you about your enquiry.

Please tick the box(es) to confirm your consent to receive marketing information from the Sulis Hospital Bath:

Marketing information

We will use your personal information to process your enquiry and contact you with relevant information. For further information, please see our website privacy policy.