Welcome to our rheumatology services homepage! Find more information below about our rheumatology services at Hampshire Hospitals, as well as contact information for our teams and useful links to other information.

Rheumatology is a branch of medicine that deals with the investigation, diagnosis and management of diseases and disorders that affect the musculoskeletal system, including joints, bones, muscles and connective tissues. These diseases are usually caused by problems in the immune system, resulting in inflammation, which leads to gradual deterioration of joints, muscles and bones.

Connective tissue disease are complex with diverse symptoms leading to inflammation, pain and involvement of internal organs.

There are more than 200 types of these diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, osteoarthritis, gout, lupus ankylosing spondylitis, osteoporosis, and tendinitis.

Many of these conditions are lifelong and will require regular treatments and hospital appointments, but our aim is always to control disease activity in order for you to carry on with life as normal. Central goals are to prevent disability and maintain function, by controlling your symptoms as much as possible.

Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust operates two rheumatology departments, at the Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital, and at the Royal Hampshire County Hospital in Winchester.

Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital

Our specialist clinics at Basingstoke/Alton include:

  • Connective tissue diseases (CTD)
  • Early inflammatory arthritis (EIA)
  • Injection clinic
  • General rheumatology
  • Emergency clinics (for organ or life threatening rheumatological conditions)
  • Ultrasound clinic
  • Specialist nurse clinics
  • Yttrium service (chemical synovectomy)

At Basingstoke, we also have access to:

  • A general infusion unit, the Lyford Unit, where we provide intravenous therapies for both autoimmune and metabolic bone diseases

Royal Hampshire County Hospital (Winchester)

Our specialist clinics at Winchester/Andover include:

  • Connective tissue diseases (CTD)
  • Early inflammatory arthritis (EIA)
  • Biologic clinic
  • Combined respiratory/rheumatology
  • Injection clinic
  • General rheumatology
  • Specialist nurse clinics

At Winchester, we also provide:

  • A dedicated Rheumatology infusion unit, located in the department, staffed by the rheumatology team, where we provide intravenous therapies for both autoimmune and metabolic bone diseases.

Occupational therapy

Occupational Therapy (OT) aims to help people who have difficulty with their everyday work, home or leisure activities because of illness or disability. Rheumatology OTs have specialist knowledge in dealing with problems caused by arthritis and related pain conditions. We will work with you to find solutions to these difficulties, aiming to allow you to carry on as independently as possible with your daily activities.
Occupational therapy can help you manage your condition in a number of ways.  We may address some of these points in your appointment, depending on your condition and personal circumstances:

  • Give advice on using your joints without straining them – joint protection.
  • Assess for splints to support your joints while working and/or resting.
  • Make recommendations on gadgets and equipment to help you with tasks at home and work.
  • Recommend exercises to improve hand and wrist movements and grip.
  • Give advice on planning, adapting and balancing daily activities with rest to reduce symptoms such as fatigue and pain.
  • Give advice on relaxation techniques.
  • Provide help and advice on coping physically and emotionally with the changes your condition may bring.
  • Make onwards referrals to groups run in the hospital and the community teams as appropriate.

You will be referred by our team when appropriate.


Physiotherapists help people affected by injury, illness or disability through movement and exercise, manual therapy, education and advice.

Patients are assessed through questions and physical assessment and an individualised treatment programme is developed in conjunction with you.

Physiotherapy can provide safe and helpful exercise programmes to help your muscles get stronger and your joints move easier, alongside practical advice as to how to manage flare ups, pacing strategies and work and home adaptation suggestions.

We can refer on to other services if needed and can also refer you into a number of classes run within our department.

You will be referred by our team when appropriate.

For general outpatient visiting information, click here. Rheumatology clinics are held Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5:00pm, in the rheumatology outpatient department.

About your appointment:

When you arrive, please check in with receptionists.

Appointments last around 15-30 minutes, and you may need to have further tests and investigations before a treatment plan is decided. You will have the opportunity to discuss this and any concerns you may have, during your appointment.

If you have an outpatient appointment, please remember:

  • To bring a list of your medications to each appointment.
  • To notify the receptionist of any changes to your personal details, for example your address or telephone number.
  • If you need to cancel or change your appointment, please notify us as soon as possible.
  • When you attend for a follow-up appointment you may not always be seen by your consultant or nurse, it may be another member of the team.
  • Wear comfortable and loose clothing to allow a smooth clinical examination.

For further information please click here to see the clinic visit framework designed by the National Early Inflammatory Arthritis Audit (NEIAA) patient panel.


  • Rheumatology consultants: Dr Leena Yalakki, Dr Rupak Moitra, Dr Nadia Ahmad, Dr Methsala Gunawardena and Dr Mariam Malik.
  • Specialist nurse/practitioner team: Cathy Boys, Kate Hardy, Lola Birch, Trish Cornes and Sara Parmenter.


  • Rheumatology consultants: Dr Emma Williams, Dr Anca Ghiurluc, Dr Neil Buchanan, Dr Salema Khalid, GP (with a specialist interest in Rheumatology) Dr Peter Beanlands.
  • Specialist nurse/practitioner team: Sarah Woollard, Michelle Clarke, Christine Graver, Clare Das, Kim Newcombe, Sarah Exworthy.
  • Clinic and Infusion Suite Team staff nurses: Gideon ‘Kojo’ Adu, Treesa Varghese.
  • Clinic and Infusion Suite Team clinical nursing assistants: Vanya Dinova, Mark Nelson.

Rheumatology clinical nurse specialists

Rheumatology clinical nurse specialists, or rheumatology practitioners, are trained members of the multidisciplinary team, who have specialist experience in looking after your rheumatology needs, or issues arising from your condition. We participate in comprehensive disease management to control disease activity, to reduce your symptoms and improve your wellbeing.  This can include education, medication management, prescribing medication, joint injections, requesting investigations, referring you to onward services and signposting you to further information. We support you to self-manage your condition for a better outcome.

We also deal with any rheumatology advice line queries.

Admin teams

Both Basingstoke and Winchester have admin teams supporting the consultants and nurse practitioners.
In Basingstoke and Winchester, the calls are taken by the admin team and where the call is of a clinical nature, pass the details to the relevant clinician to deal with.

Appointments are generally booked from waiting lists, 6 weeks ahead of the date, although patients may sometimes be deemed to be urgent by the clinicians and the admin team will arrange these where appropriate.

Admin also deal with all the paperwork for biologic medication, so may need to contact you when your medication is due for renewal or if you are not up to date with your blood tests, to give you a reminder.

This service is run by trained practitioners/nurses who specialise in Rheumatology, and provides advice and support for patients who attend the Rheumatology departments at our hospitals.

When to call the advice line:

  • If you have a flare-up of your condition that has not improved with your usual self-help methods.
  • If you experience side-effects that you think may be caused by the medication prescribed for your rheumatological condition.
  • If you have concerns about your symptoms, medication, or treatment, which cannot wait until your next appointment.

Do not call the advice line if:

  • You need to change an appointment. Please ring the booking office (Basingstoke on 01256 314 061, Option 1 - Winchester on 01962 824 150, Option 1) or via Patient Hub.
  • You want to obtain test results unless you have been asked to by your Practitioner.
  • You need general medical advice. Please note the advice line is not an emergency service.

If you need urgent medical advice, contact your GP or NHS 111. In a limb or life threatening condition, always call 999.

It is recommended that people with rheumatological conditions, irrespective of age, have an annual influenza vaccine, a one-off pneumonia vaccine and, if eligible, a shingles vaccine.

At present, Covid-19 vaccine schedules and recommendations are rapidly evolving, and the latest information on Covid-19 vaccinations is available from the links below.

For some vaccines, it is possible to improve the chances of responding by temporarily interrupting some medication for rheumatological conditions. For example, stopping methotrexate from the day of vaccination for 2-weeks will improve the chance of the body responding well to the vaccine. However, interrupting rheumatological medicine can increase the risk of flares. If your condition has been well controlled, then a short pause in medication is reasonable, but if it is active, the risks and benefits of interrupting treatment should be discussed with the rheumatology team.

Generally, for people on immunosuppressive medications, live vaccines, such as yellow fever are not recommended.  If a live vaccine is required, then this should be discussed with the Rheumatology team first.

For further information on vaccines please visit:

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