GP practices to expand online services for patients

NHS England has launched an interactive Patient Online Support and Resources Guide to help general practices deliver patient services online.

Developed in partnership with the Royal College of General Practitioners, it provides practical tools on implementing a range of online services including booking appointments and ordering repeat prescriptions.

Dr Masood Nazir, NHS England’s Clinical Director Patient Online says: “This guide has been created so that practices can find all the information and tools they need in one place.

“I know this will help GPs to feel confident in offering digital services to their patients.”

As set out in the Five Year Forward View published last month, the NHS is committed to embracing technology as a way to deliver efficient care which responds to what patients want.

The majority of GP practices already offer appointment booking and ordering of repeat prescription online.

During the coming year, practices will increasingly expand online services to include giving patients access to their own summary information held in GP records and, by April 2015, all practices will offer these services – a requirement of the 2014/15 General Medical Services (GMS) and Personal Medical Services (PMS) contracts.

We know that patients want to take more control of their own health and wellbeing and having access to GP services online will enable them to do this.

This helpful guide will equip general practices with the knowledge they need to successfully put in place these services in time for the April 2015 deadline.