Online patient facing services save GPs time and improve patient safety

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Your GP surgery has certain obligations to share medical records with any patient who asks for them. But when is it appropriate to refuse access, or is it at all? In this article, we discuss the requirements for GPs and the benefits to helping people use online patient-facing services, to save your surgery time and improve patient safety.

What are your obligations?

All practices are obliged to promote online patient-facing services, with a minimum target of 20% of their patients using at least one online service.

Currently, there are certain obligations when it comes to the types of information you share with patients. The GP contract requires practices to share the coded GP record with anyone who asks for their record. The information that you are obliged to share includes problem titles, allergies, immunisations, medication and test results. It does not currently include consultations or letters. In TPP and EMIS, you can include these last two if you choose to. With simple precautions, this is safe and easy to do. Remember, the more you share, the more time you save.

Be cautious when it comes to refusing access

You can only refuse record access if you think that there is a serious risk to the health of your patient – or to the practice. And the law means serious: inconvenience and embarrassing is not sufficient. If you do decide to share the full record, then there are simple rules to follow, explained clearly in the Patient Online documentation.

We’re here to support practices in promoting online patient services

All practices should be supported as much as possible to achieve their targets. That’s why at Evergreen Life, we’re providing supporting materials for practices to make that promotion easier. We can give you promotional materials and guidance on our services to ensure the best experience for your patients when using online patient facinf services. If you need any support, please get in touch.  

Why promote Evergreen Life?

We want to make the transition to GP online services as easy as possible for you and your patients. By promoting Evergreen Life, you’re able to:

  • Meet your national targets with an approved NHS online services supplier
  • Save your surgery time as patients use GP online services instead of calling surgery
  • Empower patients to take control of their own healthcare record
  • Promote sharing of records beyond the patient and care professional with our share and care ability
  • Improve communication and relationships between clinicians and patients by being able to access and discuss the same information.

Making the most of Evergreen Life

Much more than a GP record sharing service, Evergreen Life can offer so much more to your practice and patients 

For practices:

  • ‍Evergreen Life link on your website – we can help you easily set up a link on your surgery site to direct patients to download Evergreen Life
  • Promotional material available to promote Evergreen Life within your surgery
  • If patients share their own data with their GP, the GP can see measures that patients are tracking themselves, such as a patient’s home blood pressure, peak flow measurements and Over the Counter (OTC) medicines.
  • Health Organisation Messaging – our paid for service that enables practices to send targeted communications to specific groups of patients – for instance, people needing flu jabs, those trying or needing to stop smoking. You select who you are targeting, write your message and the action you’d like the patients to take and send. Three simple steps, all in one easy process.

For patients:

  • Share and Care service enables patients to share their record securely with whoever they choose. That could be a relative, the practice, their consultant or their carer. Care can then be consistent across a variety of health services and support staff.
  • Online patient services include appointment booking and repeat prescription ordering as well as accessing the GP record
  • A personal health record that goes above and beyond connecting with the GP record, helping patients proactively manage their own health and care.
  • Medication reminders within Evergreen Life to promote patient-powered health and medication compliance.
  • Links to information within Evergreen Life to help people can understand what they see and read
  • The ability to add OTC medicines into their Evergreen Life account and keep track of what medicines they have taken.
  • Simple and customisable homepage that is user-friendly and beautifully presented, patients can easily personalise it to their own care

If you need any further information or support to help you promote online patient-facing services, you can get in touch with our team.

Written by
Evergreen Life

Article updated:
June 7, 2017
Reviewed by:
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