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Sussex Dysphagia Network

Please, write to me. Writing outpatient clinic letters to patients.

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Please, write to me. Writing outpatient clinic letters to patients.

This guidance covers general aspects of letter writing / reports. The focus of this document is on doctors' letters but is relevant to all clinicians who write letters.

This is an interesting piece of guidance. We have discussed the advantages of writing directly to patients in our community team. This guidance suggests that patients find letters written to them more useful, GPs find them easier to understand, and you can avoid awkwardness caused by referring to patients in the 3rd person.

The guidance includes tips on making letters easier to read, including using the 'Flesch Reading Ease' score. More info on this here. Microsoft Word can be set up to show this score (see the guidance document, page 10). Score guidance:

Score

School Level

90 to 100

5th grade (Year 6, age 10-11)

80 to 90

6th grade (Year 7, age 11-12)

70 to 80

7th grade (Year 8, age 12-13)

60 to 70

8th and 9th grade (Year 9 & 10, age 13-15)

50 to 60

10th to 12th grade (Year 11-13, age 15-18)

30 to 50

college (university)

0 to 30

college graduate