A strategic partnership between myGP software creator iPLATO and GP service GPDQ has been launched to boost the capacity for NHS patient video consultations across UK General Practice as one in four GPs take sick leave.
After seeing a 1451% spike in GP video consultations being conducted during the Coronavirus pandemic, iPLATO and GPDQ have joined forces to provide surge capacity for UK-based General Practices, enabling more patients to be seen via video across the UK.
The new collaboration will provide medical practices with a team of remote doctors, pharmacists and nurses who are all able to conduct video or remote consultations via the myGP platform, in this move to provide a scalable and cost-effective solution during an unprecedented national emergency.
Dr Anshumen Bhagat, chief medical officer at GPDQ said: “GPs have an innate sense of responsibility for their patients’ health and will always want to see and help as many patients as they can. We naturally want to do everything in our power to help. By fusing the powerful myGP platform with a national team of passionate, digitally-connected clinicians we can get GPs, nurses and pharmacists in front of the patients who need them most, when they need them, without delay.
“As the Sars-Cov-19 pandemic applies additional pressure on primary care, partnering with iPLATO to be a part of the myGP platform is a logical thing to do to maximise our impact. iPLATO have the network of relationships with commissioners, and we have the experts to deliver the service. We are really looking forward to deploying our workforce to help our NHS colleagues throughout iPLATO’s network.”
The partnership will also enable the 9,000 GPs who are currently on sick leave to log-in when they feel well enough and help patients while continuing to follow self-isolation requirements.
Professor Mike Lewis, chairman at iPLATO Healthcare said: “With the rapidly increasing need for online and remote consultations within primary care it seemed obvious to partner with GPDQ, which is leading the way in using digital technology to help patient demand meet GP supply.
“We know that many practices are operating beyond capacity due to illness and GPs and the primary care workforce heading into isolation. By offering additional shared resource to a group of practices we can help to relieve pressure and patients can continue to receive the vital care that they need from the safety of their homes.”
myGP, which can be accessed via a smartphone app by patients and through a secure web interface by clinicians, has 1.6 million active users and is currently used in over 6,500 GP practices.
A controlled study of 750,000 appointments has shown that 26% of appointments booked could be met in an alternate setting rather than a face-to-face GP appointment, such as a remote or video consultations.
This partnership follows the launch of iPLATO’s Remote Consultation Enterprise, which was rapidly deployed to enable PCNs, CCGs and STPs to optimise digital health services across their population during the current pandemic. Acting as a hub and spoke service GPDQ will clinically triage and treat patients across multiple practices with the same access to patient records as a staff member, GP or Locum working at the surgery.