Stonehaven Medical Group

eConsult Case Study

Key stats

  • Patient List size: 13,100
  • Launched 3rd May 2018
  • Model: On the day triage

Key messages:

  • Using eConsult for patients wanting on the day advice or appointments works for us – if we receive the eConsult by 11.30am we get back to them within 2 hours
  • We’ve seen our call volumes drop by 38% since using eConsult for on the day appointments
  • Thinking about how to use eConsult for the clinical and administrative needs of your practice is key to its success – invest time in this up front
Stonehaven Medical Group - eConsult Case Study

What is the single biggest benefit of using eConsult? At Stonehaven Medical Group we can manage our on the day demand better because we know up front what patients need from us.

Stonehaven Medical Group have been using eConsult over the last six months in an effort to improve access to their services for patients. They’re a semi-rural area and their patients’ needs are becoming increasingly complex, putting them under more pressure. Patient continuity and flow is really important for them, and they want to ensure that their patients see the right person at the right place and time.

As a practice, we put some thought into how we could really use eConsult as part of our workflow, and we decided to use eConsult to help us manage the on the day appointment and advice demands of our patients. The great thing about eConsult is that we know patients’ symptoms and expectations upfront and we’ll respond within 2 hours if they submit their eConsult before 11.30am. For us, this means that the most appropriate person can see the patient and give them the right care, and it doesn’t add loads of work for our GPs. In fact our call volumes have dropped substantially since we moved to using eConsult for on the day triage and appointments.

 “When I got an appointment to see practice nurse, she had all the information in front of her that I’d given online, and it was more efficient.”

Patient

We’ve noted a range of other great benefits thanks to eConsult – and the feedback from patients as well as staff has been positive. For us, it’s good to see patients encouraged to self-manage and getting signposted to existing advice, as well as more effective use of consultation time. We’re also seeing improved continuity of care for our patients – and an understanding that this doesn’t have to mean a face to face appointment with the GP if it’s not needed.

“We want to get more and more of our patients using eConsult, continuing to build on the successes we’ve seen so far.”

GP

My advice for other practices would be to start using eConsult whole heartedly – advertise well to patients, prepare patients and staff for the fact that it’s coming in advance, and get everyone in the practice involved. You’ll need to dedicate some time to thinking about how best to set it up for the needs of your practice. It’s really important to think about both the clinical and admin side, so that eConsults become an integral part of the working day, instead of additional work.

What is the biggest benefit of using eConsult?

At Stonehaven Medical Group we can manage our on the day demand better because we know up front what patients need from us.

In this current environment, I was reluctant to bother the doctor but this method made it simple and although the steroid injection is not available at the moment I was given a prescription quickly to help until such time as the COVID situation settles

Patient, Stonehaven, NHS Scotland

I was satisfied because where necessary it leads to a face to face consultation. In this case quicker than via the appointment service. The doctor also appeared less rushed. I thought it a very sensible system.

Patient, Stonehaven, NHS Scotland

Saved everyone's time with a good outcome. Much faster than waiting for a face to face appointment.

Patient, Stonehaven, NHS Scotland

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