Skip to content

South East London and Kent Spinal Network

About us

The South East London and Kent (SELK) Spinal Network exists to improve the quality of care available to patients within south east London and Kent.

The network aims to standardise spinal pathways by reducing variation in clinical practice and maximising regional resources. This is to ensure equity of access to a comprehensive range of services across the network regardless of geography and addresses unwarranted variation as recommended by Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT), the national review of spinal surgery by Mike Hutton (January 2019) and the National Low Back and Radicular Pain Pathway 2017.

Network stakeholders

The SELK Spinal Network Management Team includes two lead neurosurgeons, Gordan Grahovac (King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust) and Baharam Fakouri (Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust), MSK consultant Andrew McCarter, network manager Cecilia Clarke, and a spinal administrator.

Stakeholder organisations

Spinal Network achievements

The network has been responsible for driving forward best practice pathways and maximising resources (workforce, estate) across the region. Achievements include:

  • Direct PACS access to MRIs across south east London and Kent. This means consultants on call can see patients’ images in real time and advise appropriate care.
  • Developed a model Cauda Equina Syndrome pathway. This was piloted by GIRFT as the pilot for exemplar pathway in south east London and Kent.
  • Made improvements to the spinal fractures referral pathway and management of follow-up appointments.
  • Supported and encouraged the extension of MRI provision across the region. All Trusts across the region have now increased service hours to 8am to 8pm.
  • Strengthened pathway between surgical service and pain management. Aligned to National Back Pathway.

There are still more improvements to come and we are keen to achieve more.

This year’s Network priorities

  • Kent Sectra PACS Procurement Implementation Programme.
  • Supporting the implementation of the GIRFT new national suspected Cauda Equina Syndrome pathway.
  • Developing National Back Pain Pathway online training.

Spinal referral pathways

Useful information

Acute neurosurgery referrals

BASS Leaflets

Consultant to consultant referrals guidance



SELK Spinal Network Annual Report 22-23

Spinal fracture pathway template

Spinal surgery

Meetings and events

These south east London and Kent stakeholder meetings and events are by invitation only.

Meeting Date
 MSK Leads  7 November 2023
 SELK Action Group  9 January 2024
 MSK Leads  30 January 2024
 SELK Action Group  2 April 2024
 MSK Leads  23 April 2024

Contact us

Spine referrals (MDT): [email protected]

Spinal fracture referrals (MDT): [email protected]