5.4 million patients do not have standard out-of-hours access to GP services

5.4 million patients do not have standard out-of-hours access to GP services

May 11 2018 New data indicates 805 general practices across England do not provide any extended...

NICE consults on amended QOF asthma indicators for general practice

NICE consults on amended QOF asthma indicators for general practice

April 26 2018 NICE is consulting on amending Quality and Outcome Framework indicators around the...

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PHE changes shingles vaccination programme to year-round opportunistic delivery

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Study questions appropriateness of 28-day prescriptions for long term conditions

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GPs in Wales to see £11.67m uplift in GMS contract for 2018-19

GPs in Wales to see £11.67m uplift in GMS contract for 2018-19

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  • 5.4 million patients do not have standard out-of-hours access to GP services

    5.4 million patients do not have standard out-of-hours access to GP services

    Friday, 11 May 2018 11:41
  • NICE consults on amended QOF asthma indicators for general practice

    NICE consults on amended QOF asthma indicators for general practice

    Thursday, 26 April 2018 12:22
  • PHE changes shingles vaccination programme to year-round opportunistic delivery

    PHE changes shingles vaccination programme to year-round opportunistic delivery

    Monday, 16 April 2018 09:18
  • Study questions appropriateness of 28-day prescriptions for long term conditions

    Study questions appropriateness of 28-day prescriptions for long term conditions

    Thursday, 22 March 2018 12:15
  • GPs in Wales to see £11.67m uplift in GMS contract for 2018-19

    GPs in Wales to see £11.67m uplift in GMS contract for 2018-19

    Thursday, 22 March 2018 12:08

a smartphone imageFebruary 7 2018

The development of new ways for patients to access GP services could threaten the traditional strengths of general practice, a new study has warned.

“Initiatives that offer faster and easier access to GPs for some patients risk undermining the ability of doctors to manage people with complex or unknown illnesses and keep them out of hospital,” the Nuffield Trust report has suggested.

In particular, schemes such as the recently-launched ‘GP at Hand’ in London which offers consultations primarily using phone apps and video consultations, could see GPs pulled away from their traditional ‘medical generalist’ role “where they can provide continuity of care and focus on understanding patients in the social and family contexts that shape their health.”

The report, ‘Divided we fall: getting the best out of general practice’, has been written by Dr Rebecca Rosen. It also considers how the profession could adapt to the changes in how services are provided, proposing that it will be possible to “combine the strengths of traditional general practice with the advantages of different services for different groups” via a number of methods:

  • With a shortage of GPs and rising part time working, continuity with one doctor can be hard to come by. One way to address this could be through ‘team-based-continuity’ with small groups of professionals who develop an ongoing relationship with patients.
  • Software analysing patient data can be used to work out whether each person would benefit more from faster access, or continuity with a doctor or team who can manage ongoing conditions.
  • Technology should be used more effectively in all local practices to support easier access, monitor long term conditions and more, so that patients feel less reason to go elsewhere.

Links:
Nuffield Trust announcement  
Dr R Rosen. ‘Divided we fall: getting the best out of general practice’. Research report, Nuffield Trust. Published February 5 2018            

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