I offer a comprehensive private allergy service within the facilities of the Great North Children’s Hospital out-patient department (Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust). As one of a small number of allergy specialists in the UK, I look after children with all types of allergy problems including food allergy, anaphylaxis, asthma, allergic rhinitis (hayfever), eczema, urticaria and drug allergy.
Clinical evidence shows that there are more and more children with allergies, and that these problems are becoming more complex. Hence, there is an increasing need for the provision of allergy services for parents and children that take account of the latest developments in diagnostic testing and treatment options. I offer a diagnostic and management service for patients with possible allergic symptoms for both insured and uninsured patients. This service complements the services available through the NHS.
My clinics are for children from birth to 16.
Referral & clinic organisation details
I provide an allergy evaluation service for children with suspected allergy. These conditions include food allergy, eczema, asthma, rhinitis, urticaria and drug allergy. I request that patients are referred to me through their General Practitioner, Nurse Practitioner in a Health Centre or another hospital consultant. For patients wishing to make a direct appointment, I need to ensure that your GP is informed beforehand, as I will always, unless specifically requested not to, will send a copy of the consultation letter to your GP.
When it is clear that the referral problem does not fall within the scope of the allergy service, I will suggest your GP refer you to a different clinic. In that circumstance, I shall inform you of the reasons and give advice on more appropriate sources of help.
My clinic slots are available approximately weekly, dependent on demand. Please give me at least 24 hours warning if you are unable to attend for any reason. I will reserve the right to make a charge if you fail to attend your appointment without sufficient warning. The non-attendance fee will be £35.
Confirmation of your appointment will be sent out and you will be required to fill in the agreement to pay for the Hospital Charges, including investigations. As the professional charge for my service is raised separately, I also ask that you sign the agreement at the end of this leaflet and return it to me. Appointments cannot be confirmed until both signed agreement forms have been received. If you have any queries about the appointment, or need to cancel or change your appointment please contact me through
For insured patients, it is your responsibility to obtain authorisation for the consultation from your Insurer in advance. Insurers may refuse reimbursement if this is not done. Your Insurer may require me to complete a form in advance, which I am happy to do. Please check carefully the terms of your cover with the Insurer, in particular any excess that you will be required to pay. Some policies set limits for the total amount available for investigations and outpatient consultations. You will be responsible for any excess above these limits.
You should bring your insurance details with you to the consultation, together with any claim form that requires my signature. For most large insurers, I and the hospital will be able to bill your insurer directly. Some smaller insurer may require you to settle the invoices and claim the amounts back from them. Please remember that YOU are responsible for ensuring settlement of the account, not the Insurer. The agreement to provide services is with you and not the insurer. If your policy carries an excess or the charges exceed your annual limit, you will be required to settle this yourself directly.
If you are not insured then you are responsible for all charges, including professional charges, the hospital attendance fee and the costs of any investigations.
Your consultation will take place in the Children’s Out Patients Department, Great North Children’s Hospital. There is parking in the adjacent Multistorey Car Park – but please allow enough time for this. Your child will need to discontinue any oral antihistamine treatments for 5 days before the appointment. A full medical history will be taken, followed by a physical examination. The initial consultation may around 40 minutes, occasionally longer if testing is also required. Further investigations, including skin prick tests and blood tests may be recommended. These will incur extra charges.
At the end of the consultation, I shall give you and your child advice on the management of the condition. I may recommend that further consultations with another specialist is needed, or that your GP needs to prescribe certain medication. I will discuss these with you and write to you and your GP to summarise the advice.
Skin prick testing
This is a scientifically validated way of diagnosing allergies. Drops of solutions containing the test substances are placed on the forearm, and pricked through into the skin with a lancet. The procedure is not a painful one. A positive reaction is accompanied by a small itchy wheal [‘hive’]. In very rare cases your child may develop wheeze or more widespread rashes following this type of testing. If this occurs, I will prescribe medicine to reverse the effects. The testing takes around 15 minutes to complete and I will discuss the results with you during the consultation.
I may need to take a blood sample. This is done by inserting a needle in a large vein in the elbow, or from the back of the hand. This can cause minor discomfort, but a topical anaesthetic cream applied for 45 minutes, or a ‘cold’ spray can help minimise this. The results of blood tests may take some time to return and I will write to you with the results
Unless you ask not to, I will always provide a written report to the referring doctor and/or your GP. I will provide you with a copy of this report to keep, unless you ask me not to do so. My advice is that your GP should always be informed unless there are exceptional reasons.
I may ask you to return for a follow up visit to discuss the results of tests, or progress with treatment. Follow-up visits will last up to ½ an hour. Occasionally, further tests may be recommended or admission as a day case or inpatient for further investigation. The nature of the testing will be discussed in detail with you if it is felt that it would help in the diagnosis or management of your child’s condition
Charges (effective from 1st July 2016)
My professional charges are as follows:
Initial Medical Consultation
Subsequent Medical Consultation
Skin Prick Testing (additional professional charge)
Phlebotomy (blood sampling additional professional charge)
For each outpatient visit, the Hospital levies a variety of different charges in addition to charges listed above. These charges are determined by the Hospital and available from the private patient department.
For non-insured patients, payment in cash or personal cheque is acceptable. I can accept credit card payments, via PayPal. Terms are 30 days. Prompt settlement is appreciated. In the event of non-payment, interest will be charged on the outstanding amount, and debts will be referred to a debt collection agency. This will incur additional charges, for which you will be liable. Referral to a debt collection agency may affect your ability to obtain credit in the future.
The Trust is able to process credit card payments for the attendance fee and test costs.
If you are unable to pay for any reason, it is essential that you contact me immediately to discuss the problem.
I hope that you will be satisfied with the service provided but if you have any complaints or concerns about your treatment, I will be happy to discuss the problem with you at any time.