We have integrated the use of Ask NHS into our appointment booking process.
We are keen to offer our patients the ability to book an urgent appointment quickly without waiting on the phone.
The Ask NHS app has a good symptom checker. This allows the patient to identify their medical need and have the priority of that need quickly and well assessed. The application then identifies an appropriate course of action and if needed an appointment at the practice.
Once an appointment is selected the practice receive a full set of information about the condition/issue the patient has identified. This allows us to identify the most suitable clinician to meet the patient need.
We usually make telephone contact with patients in the first instance. However, the information provided does allow us to identify when a video or face to face appointment would be more appropriate. This saves the patient and the practice time.
The use of the application during the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly helped both patients and the practice. The feedback has been on whole very positive. Our clinicians have been impressed with the accuracy of the symptom checker. They are happy to use the information provided to help manage the patients need.
Our patients have said:
Easy to use and had a call back with the GP within the time frame specified.
Very good service! Many thanks.
I like it better than calling 111 and I will use this as my preferred method.
The speed in which the developer will address any problems our patients or staff identify has impressed us. As a result, they have continued to improve the usability of the app.
But there is much more to Ask NHS. It also has a useful self-help facility with a comprehensive set of links to information on a full range of conditions and illnesses which can be used at any time of the day or night. We also are now planning on using the app to allow patients to complete a range of administrative tasks. This will reduce the need for them to come to the practice unnecessarily saving them time but also keeping us all safer.