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South Thames cleft service referrals

Referrals for all new babies should be made by contacting the clinical nurse specialist (CNS) by phone. Please see the antenatal and postnatal referrals section for a list of local CNS phone numbers.

Referrals should be sent by email to cleft.gstt@nhs.net.

Referrals can be addressed for the attention of the cleft consultant surgeon, speech and language therapist, clinical psychologist, consultant paediatric dentist or orthodontist, or clinical nurse specialist.


Further information

Antenatal and postnatal referrals

Referrals should be made by telephone only by contacting the clinical nurse specialist (CNS) closest to where the baby lives:

  • South London:
    • 07768 474 667
    • 07976 292 232
    • 07884 182 756
  • Surrey:
    • 07717 571 931
  • West Kent/Sussex:
    • 07970 261 781
  • North and East Kent:
    • 07810 483 923
    • 07768 474 876

If the diagnosis is made antenatally, the ultrasound department will refer directly to the CNS, who will make contact with the family within 24 hours.

If a baby is born with a cleft lip and/or palate, the ward staff on the maternity unit will refer directly to the CNS, who will visit, carry out a feeding assessment and develop a management plan.

Occasionally, referrals can be made by a GP or health visitor. These referrals can be sent by email to cleft.gstt@nhs.net. Parents may make a self-referral directly to the CNS.

An on-call service is provided 365 days a year, including bank holidays for antenatal and postnatal referrals.

For all children over one year of age/adult referrals

Referrals can be sent by email to cleft.gstt@nhs.net.

Speech and language therapy referrals

This is a tertiary service that accepts referrals for cleft patients and for patients where there is concern that velopharyngeal function for speech may not be working correctly. Concerns may include an overly nasal tone of voice, unusual speech patterns and accompanying nasal airflow when talking.

We accept referrals from any agency within the south east region including GPs, speech and language therapists, paediatricians, and ear, nose and throat (ENT) consultants.

To refer we require a written referral letter outlining the case history and presenting speech difficulties that are causing concern. Please email the letter to cleft.gstt@nhs.net.

We are happy to discuss referrals over the phone if you are unsure. The service can be contacted by phone on 020 7188 1321 and ask for the lead speech and language therapist.

Orthodontist/Paediatric dentistry

Children with a cleft lip and/or palate are introduced to the orthodontist and paediatric dentist when they come to the multi-disciplinary cleft palate clinics.

It is not usual for a child to be referred directly but requests for second opinions can be sent in and, where appropriate, treatment may be provided by a local dentist. More commonly, orthodontic care will be provided by a hospital-based consultant. Please send dental and orthodontic referrals by email to cleft.gstt@nhs.net.


Urgent referrals

Two week referrals

The two-week wait referral pathway does not ordinarily apply to the cleft service, but all antenatal or postnatal referrals should be treated as urgent and the CNS for your area contacted by phone to allow us to respond within 24-hours. This service is available 365 days per year. Referrals for our other clinicians can be sent by email to cleft.gstt@nhs.net and marked “urgent.”

Emergency referrals

Emergency referrals are not usually made to the cleft service, but all urgent matters can be directed to the CNS in your area or the service can be contacted during business hours on 020 7188 1321.

Referral contacts

Antenatal and children up to 2 years of age

Referrals by telephone only

Cleft clinical nurse specialist:
Tel: 07884 182756

Children over 2 years of age and adults

Email: Cleft.GSTT@nhs.net

South Thames cleft service

1st floor, Staircase C,
South Wing
St Thomas' Hospital
Westminster Bridge Road
London SE1 7EH

©  Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.
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