Freeing up telephone lines and reducing demand for appointments with Online Consult

Health and social care

With a high patient to appointment ratio, Shrewsbury Road Surgery needed a way to manage their demand for appointments more effectively. That's where Online Consult came in.

By introducing Online Consult into the practice, Mira Rajan, practice manager at Shrewsbury Road Surgery, has noticed how much easier it's become to manage patient demand. Online Consult has also made it much easier for patients who work full-time jobs to get an appointment, as they no longer need to take the time out to travel to the practice. Plus, because it's user-friendly, people of all technical abilities have been able to access online consultations.

Freeing up reception

30% reduction in calls to reception to book appointments

Since the practice started using Online Consult, their reception staff have more time to focus on patients who have urgent queries. They've also been more able to deal with essential admin tasks, thanks to a 30% reduction in the number of calls to reception to book appointments.

Online Consult also allows the practice's reception team to easily track requests and suggest alternative options to patients if they don’t really need an appointment. It's not only improving the patient experience, but it's also reducing some of the pressures on the staff too.  

 

Effectively and efficiently managing appointments

20% reduction in demand for appointments

By giving patients more options instead of face-to-face appointments, the practice has been able to reduce the demand for appointments by 20%. By ensuring that only patients with complex needs are given a face-to-face appointment has meant that there have been fewer missed appointments and has reduced as appointments are only made when they're really needed. Screening the appointments in this way is much less time consuming for GPs than face-to-face appointments. And, because they can review patient history through MESH integration with EMIS Web to manage each enquiry, it's more efficient too.

"Online Consult has been a tremendous help for the practice as a whole, reducing the workload for admin staff and GPs."

Mira Rajan, practice manager, Shrewsbury Road Surgery

A better patient experience

Mira told us that patients are now happier with the services provided by the practice because their needs are being met quicker and more effectively. Because patients can send a message to the practice at any time, it suits their busy lives and means that they can get help and advice in a way that's convenient for them. They no longer have to call or visit the practice for every enquiry, which saves them a lot of time and means that they're not waiting as long to get the care they need.

“When it comes to managing busy workflows and patient demand, Online Consult could be just what the doctor ordered.”

Mira Rajan, practice manager, Shrewsbury Road Surgery

Change made simple with ongoing support

Throughout the process of introducing Online Consult practice have had ongoing support from us. “Egton have been really easy to contact whenever we’ve needed anything, which has made everything run smoothly,” explains Mira.

Not only have the practice been able to call on our support team when needed, they also had our support materials to hand, giving them useful hints, tips and materials they could use to promote Online Consult to their patients. “The patient facing materials and guides were so useful in getting our patients to start using Online Consult. Once they’d tried it, we’ve found that most patients will use it again,” Mira tells us.

 

A forward step

Using Online Consult has been a huge step forward for Shrewsbury Road Surgery and has gone a long way to helping them better manage their demand for appointments. In fact, it’s been so useful, that they’re also introducing our Video Consult system too so that they can provide their patients with even more alternative options. “We think Video Consult will be another excellent addition to our service offerings and can’t wait to see what improvements it brings,” explains Mira.

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