Consultation Being Held About Online GP Services

Local NHS commissioning group wants to hear your views

Online consultations have become the norm during lockdown
Online consultations have become the norm during lockdown. Picture: Pushdoctor

A consultation has begun into the provision of online GP consultation services in the NHS North West London region which includes the boroughs of Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham, Hammersmith & Fulham and Hounslow.

The NHS North West London Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is seeking to find out how the public views this kind of provision.

Online GP consultation services allow anyone registered with a GP practice to make contact with them via the internet. The service can be used for a variety of reasons, from non-urgent general medical advice for yourself or a child, requesting an appointment, seeking information and support with a long-term condition and administrative help including sick notes. To use the service, patients complete an online form via their GP practice website or through a mobile app. The practice then aims to provides the most appropriate response, such as advice sent by text, email or online live chat, or a phone, video or face to face appointment.

The NHS continue to provide both face to face appointments as well as online services to try to enable patients to access their GP in the way that suits them.

The NHS will be working with local Healthwatch’s to engage with residents across North West London to help the NHS gain a better understanding of views on online GP services. It wants to hear from patients and the public about what’s working, what doesn’t and how it can make it better so that online services remain beneficial to those using them.

Professor Ian Goodman, Clinical Lead for Primary Care Digital Strategy, North West London CCG, said, “The pandemic shined a light on the importance of the NHS keeping up with the times and providing a service that is high quality both on and offline. It is our sole aim to always deliver care that is beneficial to our patients and the public. We’re really looking forward to having Healthwatch on-board with this important work and sharing their expertise on listening to the public through research and engagement.”

The ability to contact your GP online started a few years ago with the intention of helping make accessing the surgery and your GP easier. During the Covid-19 pandemic, these services became especially important and allowed practices to effectively stay open and continue helping patients.

The survey can be found by clicking here and will stay open until Wednesday 5 January 2022.

If you have any questions about the survey or the work the NHS and Healthwatch are doing contact

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November 4, 2021