How to get a GP referral

Cardinal Clinic always prefer patients to be referred to us by their GP.  Details about how to get a GP referral are outlined here.

In summary:

  • Contact your GP and ask what their process is for referring patients to a private healthcare provider
  • Either make an appointment to see your GP to ask for a referral, or request a referral over the phone
  • Ask to be referred to Cardinal Clinic
  • Collect the referral letter and forward it to Cardinal Clinic, if your surgery does not do that for you.
  • We will contact you when we receive the referral letter

Why We Like GPs to be Involved

We ask you to obtain a letter of referral from your GP.  This is recognised as being good practice and also ensures that we are aware of any physical health conditions that may affect your treatment.

If we feel medication would help your recovery, it is important that we understand other medications you may be taking.  This is to ensure anything prescribed will not affect other conditions you may be experiencing.

Your GP has overall responsibility for your care so it is important they are kept informed.


We understand that you may not wish to give the GP details of why you would like to be seen at the Clinic.  If this is the case, you can just request a letter of referral rather than explaining the reason for it.  However, the more information you are able to give us, the easier it will be for us to identify the most suitable clinician for your treatment.  This is based on clinical experience and availability.

Alternatively, we can accept patients who refer themselves.  For more information about this process, please click the link below:

Arranging a Self-Referral

Please be aware that your consultant may feel it is in your best interests for us to liaise with your GP.  If we feel this is a matter of patient safety, we may not be able to provide treatment should you not give us permission to contact them.

Referral Process

The referral process is not the same with all surgeries so it is advisable to check. You may be able to request a referral over the phone at your surgery.  Other surgeries will require a face to face appointment.  However your surgery operates, please explain that you would like to arrange for private treatment and you would like them to refer you to Cardinal Clinic.

Your GP will then write a letter referring you to us.  Some surgeries will send the referral letter directly to us.  Other surgeries will give you the letter so you can forward it on, yourself.

If you are given the letter by your surgery, you can send it to us by post addressed to the Referrals Team at Cardinal Clinic, Oakley Green Road, Windsor, Berkshire SL4 5UL.

Alternatively, you can email the referral to and we will contact you to arrange an appointment.

Open and Direct Referrals

When your GP refers you to Cardinal Clinic, they may refer you to a specific consultant psychiatrist.  This is what we call a Direct Referral.  Alternatively, they may refer you to us, but ask us to allocate you to the most appropriate consultant.  This is what we call an Open Referral.

We have no preference which type of referral we receive.  We allocate open referrals on the basis of the clinician who is most appropriate for a condition and who has the quickest availability.  Direct referrals might take slightly longer to arrange an appointment for, if the chosen clinician is very busy.

Some patients may have a particular preference for who they see.  This might be on the basis of gender or clinical experience.  You should discuss this with your GP if you have a preference.  A biography of all our clinicians can be found at the link below:

Biographies of Clinicians


If you have any questions about how to get a GP referral, please do get in touch and we will be happy to help.  All the details for getting in touch are at the following link:

Contact Us

A calm environment dedicated to your care

Rated ‘Outstanding’ for care and overall ‘Good’ by the Care Quality Commission, Cardinal Clinic works tirelessly to offer an elevated patient experience from exquisite and fresh chef-prepared meals, to comfortable and relaxing accommodations. Situated in a private estate in the heart of Windsor’s green belt, residential in-patient care, day care and out-patient services are offered.

Cardinal Clinic patient and therapist walking under rose arch in private mental hospital grounds

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