An AQP diagnostic may be appropriate where the result will support the management of the patient in a primary care setting. Referrers should consider the basis on which the request for a diagnostic is being made - the AQP diagnostic service is a single episode of care, for routine imaging which will be undertaken within a maximum of 20 working days of acceptance of the referral.

Out of scope

  • GP direct requests for Knees and Lumber/Sacral Spine
  • Urgent requests
  • Contrast MRI (send direct to the local acute provider)
  • Any patient with suspected cancer should be referred through the two week wait referral pathway;
  • Patients with a Body Mass Index exceeding the manufacturer's health and safety guidance for weight limits of the MRI unit or couch
  • Patients with implanted medical devices are MRI contraindicated and in certain cases are MRI conditional. The referrer has a responsibility to provide information on all such devices, but the final responsibility for safety rests with the Provider in line with Provider protocols and relevant safety guidelines and resources
  • Children under the age of 18
  • Patients requiring a general anaesthetic
  • Hospital inpatients
  • Non-NHS patients



When considering ordering imaging, please bear in mind the following:

  • You will need to explain the findings to the patient, so be clear that the investigation is indicated and you know what to do with the result. If the result of a diagnostic image will not change your management of a patient in primary care consider other investigations as appropriate
  • Be aware that scans show incidental findings in a number of cases that can then lead to further possibly unnecessary imaging and associated financial cost and anxieties
  • Other modalities may be more appropriate for your patient. Advice may be available from your local radiology department and via iRefer Guidelines
  • When referring for a diagnostic test or referring as a result of an image please ensure any history of previous scans is included
  • If it is likely that your patient will need a specialist opinion proceed to a referral where investigative tests can be ordered under the care of a consultant


Referral Criteria

  • GP/ ESP/GPwSI requests only
  • Routine scans only
  • MRI requests for new investigations (follow ups do not come under AQP)
  • Include a reason for referral and relevant clinical history (including physio info)
  • Referrers professional registration code to be included and contact details (generic email to receive the reports)

Referrals submitted without this information may be returned.

Referral Instructions

GP referrals

Complete all fields of the referral form and refer using e-Referral Service.

e-RS service selection:

  • Specialty: Diagnostic Imaging
  • Clinic Type: MRI
  • Services: DRSS-Western-AQP-MRI-Diagnostic Imaging-DEVON CCG-15N
ESP/GPwSI referrals

ESP and GPwSI colleagues should complete all fields of the referral form and send to DRSS via email

Referral Forms

AQP MRI Referral Form

Supporting Information

Patient Information

  • Any MRI or NOUS diagnostic results will be managed by the referrer
  • All AQP referrals will be booked using the Devon Referral Support Services (DRSS) who will offer the patient a choice of appointment location, date and time of providers within New Devon CCG & South Devon & Torbay CCG areas
  • Appointments will be available within 20 days of referral and patients should be ready, willing and able to be seen within this time. Patients who are not ready to be seen should be delayed until such time as when they will be ready to be seen within this time frame
  • Patients will be contacted by their chosen provider prior to their appointment and asked a set of security questions to ensure their personal safety
  • Each patient should receive a letter of confirmation from their chosen provider detailing any important appointment instructions

Any queries relating to a referral can be directed to DRSS Helpdesk on 01626 883 888

Pathway Group

This is an administrative guideline created by DRSS to support referral process as outlined by NEW Devon CCG.

Publication date: January 2018


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