The Government has made the commitment that by 31 March 2020, GP Practices make online consultations available to their patients. To meet this commitment, Whitnash Medical Centre will be making online consultations available through our website from 16th March 2020. Below are some questions and answers that we hope will clarify what online consultations are and how they will benefit you, our patient.
What is an online consultation?
An online consultation is made by our patients accessing and completing a form (available through this practice website). These forms are available 24/7/365 and relate to a large number of problems and queries. The form is completely secure and contains a number of questions relating to the specific problem or query. Once completed, it is sent to the practice and reviewed by a member of our team. It is then passed to the most appropriate person to be dealt with. We aim to have the forms reviewed within 36 hours if the next day is a working day.
Is this instead of seeing a doctor?
No, and it may be that the doctors or member of the practice team reviewing the online consultation form decides that an appointment or phone call with a doctor is the most appropriate way of dealing with the patient’s query or problem.
Will my online consultation be dealt with by a doctor?
Where appropriate then this will be the case but there are a large number of queries and problems that do not need a doctor to deal with them. Certain queries that don’t need direct clinical involvement will only be accessible as an online consultation. For example, if you a have been referred to see a specialist and have not had your appointment then this does not need a phone call to the practice. Another example is if you have changed your details or wish to register with us. These do not require you to contact the practice as they will be available through an online consultation.
We see online consultations as an innovative and accessable way for patients to contact the practice. Online consultations can be accessed from a smart phone, tablet or PC removing the need to wait on the phone. We are sure our patients will benefit from this new form of access.