eConsult is the most widely used form-based online consultation and triage platform that gathers and collates each patient’s medical or administrative request and sends it through to their local GP practice to be reviewed. It also directs the patient to self-help, pharmacy advice and local self-referral services tailored to their condition, as well as redirecting sick patients to more appropriate Urgent and Emergency Care provision. The patient simply logs onto eConsult via the NHS App or their practice website and can choose from an array of services depending on their medical condition. It takes GPs only 2-3 minutes to process an eConsult, and research shows that 70% of requests are closed without the need for a face-to-face appointment.
If patients want advice from their doctor, they can submit a short form that collects their history, asking relevant details about their condition by adapting intelligently, that has been developed via proprietary clinical algorithms. They can also submit admin requests and provide a photograph (if relevant) for review by their practice. eConsult captures over 100 common clinical conditions, with built-in red flags to highlight critical symptoms that may require immediate or urgent intervention. eConsult reports are sent securely directly into the clinical system, to be triaged by staff as appropriate. Standardised questions mean nothing is missed and allows GPs to familiarise themselves with the reports. Having a patient history upfront means you can quickly decide on the next steps, with only around 30% of patients needing a face-to-face follow up.