Padgate Medical Centre
Padgate Medical Centre, 12 Station Road South, Padgate, Warrington | Tel: 01925 815333 | WARCCG.firstname.lastname@example.org
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E-consult – Overview and Frequently Asked Questions
What is an Online Consultation?
An Online Consultation enables you to contact a GP or other health professional at your registered GP Practice, via the internet. In Warrington the system used by all Practices is called eConsult.
eConsult is an online system that allows you to access advice from your GP Practice at a time that suits you. This service is available at any time, from any device with internet access and response times from the Practice will be within core opening hours (08:00-18:30).
The eConsult system asks you a series of questions about your symptoms with prompts to provide information describing your current medical concern.
You will initially enter personal details, to verify your identity, then the eConsult system uses built-in clinical knowledge to determine if help is needed more quickly than the Practice can provide, e.g. emergency services. In these cases, the system will stop processing the request and suggest how to seek urgent medical advice based upon your responses.
If the condition you describe can be managed without contacting the Practice, eConsult can guide you towards trusted medical advice, as well as relevant local services, such as pharmacy support.
Requests made via eConsult may be clinical or administrative in nature. In many cases the
condition may not generate the need for a face-to-face appointment. This can then free-up clinician time and appointments for Patients with complex needs.
How do I access eConsult?
eConsult is available via your Practice’s website, which can be accessed from any internet compatible device. You will be presented with options to either review NHS approved information about your condition, review self-help advice, submit an administrative query or consult with a clinician at your Practice.
How do I consult with a clinician?
Once you have accessed eConsult via your Practice’s website, you will be presented with a set of questions inviting you to submit information about your condition. At the end of the set of questions, prior to submitting the questionnaire, you can choose to have a copy of your answers emailed to you and/ or partake in a one-time survey, which will be emailed to you a few days after your consultation.
The eConsult system notifies you of what happens next including the Practice response time to your submission and crucially what to do if your condition worsens. Advice is also provided on ensuring you do not miss the Practice response and what to do if you do not receive any contact from your Practice by the specified response time.
Upon submitting your questionnaire, you will be advised of the Practice response time. The system sends the online form to your registered Practice where, during core Practice hours, it is reviewed by the clinicians. Depending upon the content of the eConsult submission, the Practice clinician will make a decision regarding next step
The Practice may respond in a variety of ways, based on information provided or the urgency of the condition:
- If appropriate, an appointment with a clinician may be offered, either on the day or
- for a later date;
- You may receive a phone call from a the Practice, this is because a face-to-face appointment may not be needed to resolve the issue;
- You may be referred directly for investigations or a hospital appointment tofurther investigate symptoms;
- You may be directed to another Health Professional outside the Practice, as they may be best placed to offer the advice or support needed. This could include local pharmacy support, a minor injuries unit or other services such as physiotherapy;
- You may be directed towards appropriate self-help advice.
Note: At all times the Practice will protect your privacy and cannot discuss personalmatters unless they’re certain they’re speaking to the correct Patient, or someoneauthorised to speak on your behalf.
What if I cannot or do not want to use the eConsult service?
If you are unable to use or access eConsult, you can still contact your Practice via traditional routes including telephone and/ or face-to-face where you will be supported by the Practice.Please note: The fastest way to complete an eConsult will be for you to do this yourself online.
Once completed, whether online or over the phone, all eConsult requests will be reviewed by the Practice clinician within the specified timeframe (to be determined by the Practice). The clinician will prioritise Patients based on their needs rather than method of contact i.e. over the phone, requesting online or presenting in person.
Can I submit an eConsult for someone else?
Generally, Patients using the eConsult service should submit requests based on their own symptoms or conditions. In some cases, people need help submitting their requests on eConsult. Friends, family, carers can assist in completing the form provided consent has been obtained.
How do I book a review appointment at my Practice for a future date?
If you are due to attend a review appointment, then you should contact the Practice to arrange this. You may be advised by the Practice to complete an eConsult to provide more detail about your condition, prior to your appointment.
What if I am under 18 and want to speak to my GP about a confidential matter (such as pregnancy / sexual health / mental health)?
eConsult is currently only available for use by people aged 18+. Therefore, if you do not want your legal guardian to submit an eConsult on your behalf, you will need to contact your Practice directly via telephone, in person etc.
What do I do if I have a condition or impairment that makes accessing eConsult difficult?
If you are unable to use or access eConsult, you can still contact your Practice via traditional routes including telephone and/ or face-to-face where you will be supported by the Practice.
Some of the health condition templates are sex specific but I do not identify with any gender, how do I complete these templates?
The eConsult system has been built with specific gender questions to assist clinicians when considering the information provided and any possible investigations required. All Patients can complete the General Advice template to describe their condition.