The rapid spread of coronavirus has given the NHS a “kick forward” in the need to accelerate technology and ensure staff are digitally prepared, a GP has said.
Neil Paul, a Digital Health columnist and GP in Ashfields, said the need to reduce face-to-face appointments to prevent the potential transmission of Covid-19 has forced the NHS, particularly in primary care, to adopt already available technologies.
He said practices “still in the stone ages” and “technophobes” were less prepared for the current situation, but that it would force them to move into the digital age.
“It’s absolutely made my surgery go ‘right, how do we do online consults’. I think it actually has given people a real kick forward,” he told Digital Health News.
“I think in six months’ time my surgery might be very different in that actually we will be doing a lot of online and telephone consults where previously we may have been a bit reluctant."
GP practices across the country have been advised to assess patients online or via telephone and video appointments to mitigate the potential spread of coronavirus.
In a letter to GPs last week, NHS England urged Britain’s 7,000 GP surgeries to reduce face-to-face appoints for patients displaying symptoms of Covid-19. The preemptive move means millions of patients will now be triaged online, via telephone or video and contacted via text messaging services.
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Source: Digital Health News, 13 March 2020