We have detected that you are using Internet Explorer to visit this website. Internet Explorer is now being phased out by Microsoft. As a result, NHS Digital no longer supports any version of Internet Explorer for our web-based products, as it involves considerable extra effort and expense, which cannot be justified from public funds. Some features on this site will not work. You should use a modern browser such as Edge, Chrome, Firefox, or Safari. If you have difficulty installing or accessing a different browser, contact your IT support team.
Slot reservation allows service providers of directly bookable services (DBS) to retain newly published appointment slots within the NHS e-Referral Service (e-RS) for their own use, for a limited number of days
How it helps service providers
Slot reservation allows service providers to reserve newly published appointment slotswithin e-RS. These newly published slots areonlyvisibleto their organisation for a limited number of days and as a result, allows their personnel tobookpatientsintotheseslots.The following scenarios detail whenthismaybehelpful.
Scenario 1: whenanappointmentneedstoberebooked. For example, as a result ofcancellingandre-scheduling a clinic.
Scenario 2: whenanonwardreferralisbeingbookedinto a servicewithinthesame provider organisation that initiated the onwardreferral,andnosuitableappointmentsareavailable.
Scenario 3: when a referralis‘deferred’totheprovider(i.e.duetoanappointmentslotissue)andtheUBRNappearsontheAppointmentSlotIssuesworklist.
Itshouldbenotedthatinalltheseexamples,theslotreservationfunctionalitywillallowthebookingofappointmentstoremainwithin e-RS,thereforegivingproviders access to the referral letter onceithasbeenattached.
How it works
The service definerin a providerorganisationcanapplyslotreservationto a serviceunderthe‘SlotManagement’shrubinthe‘MaintainServices’tab.The‘SlotReservationPeriod’valuecanbesetto:
0 day - noslotreservationisapplied
1 day - newslots sent to e-RSwill be reserved forprovider use only foroneday
2 days - newslots sent to e-RSwill be reserved for provider use onlyfortwodays
Examples and impact of applying slot reservation to a service
Whenapplyingslotreservationto a service,itisrecommendedthatthe Slot PollingRangeisincreasedbythesame number of days as selectedfortheSlotReservationPeriod.Thiswillensurethat thesamerangeofappointmentslotsisstillavailabletoexternalusers.
Slot reservation set to 0 - Slot Polling Range will still be 70 days as there is no slot reservation
Slot reservation set to 1 - Slot Polling Range will be 71 days as there is one day slot reservation
Slot reservation set to 2 - Slot Polling Range will be 72 days as there is two days slot reservation
Ifadhocappointmentslotsarecreatedfor a service(forexample,shortnoticeadditionalclinicsareaddedwithintheexistingpollingrange)andarepublishedto e-RSwithslotreservationappliedtotheservice,thenwhen e-RS receivesthesenewslots for the first time itwillreservethemfortheslotreservationperiodandtheywillnotimmediatelybeavailabletoallusers.
Other useful information to know about slot reservation
Below are some useful information points about slot reservation.
once a reservedslotisbookedinto,if theappointmentiscancelledbyanyusertheslotwillnolongerbereserved. Otherslotmanagementrulessuchas‘SlotProtection’ (N3/HSCN connection required to access link)willstillapplyaspernormal