Lockdown has changed many aspects of our life but it should not have to negatively impact your health. We have seen our living rooms turned into offices, nurseries and schools in the last few months. Now, more and more people are conducting their GP appointments from the comfort of their lounge too.
Equipsme members can book remote GP appointments 24/7. Local surgeries are doing their best to make their services digital too, allowing you to conduct a GP appointment without having to travel. Additionally, there are obvious advantages to avoiding the doctor’s waiting room when you’re sick and of course this is particularly pertinent for limiting the spread of COVID-19.
There are many benefits to remote GP appointments. One key clear merit is their convenience. They offer speed and efficiency without the need to travel anywhere. Treat the remote GP as much as possible as you would a normal face-to-face consultation.
Here are some tips on how to maximise your remote GP appointment.
1. Time is of the essence
The most beneficial aspects of a remote GP appointment are its time-efficiency and convenience. This means that punctuality is key. As you would with a face-to-face appointment, make sure you record in your diary the date and time of the appointment so that you do not miss it. When dealing with video conferencing, it is always advisable to join the call a little early. This allows for any potential technical glitches that may occur. With this in mind, it may also be worthwhile to test your tech beforehand. Make sure you are somewhere with strong connection and that your microphone works properly.
2. Come prepared
Be prepared with details, specifically what symptoms you are experiencing and when they began. It is crucial you provide as much information as possible and try to be as descriptive and accurate as you can. By preparing this information beforehand, it will help you to be time-efficient and address the most important concerns. Within this preparation, be sure to also include a list of medications that you are currently taking and any relevant medical history. If you have any specific questions for your GP, have these ready as well. All of this will help your GP gain a better understanding and provide a more valuable treatment.
3. Treat your lounge like a GP’s office
As much as possible, try and create a designated space for your remote GP appointment. This means finding somewhere quiet and private where you can talk without being disturbed. Deciding on the correct diagnosis requires an open and honest dialogue so make sure you are somewhere where you are comfortable to talk. Additionally, try and find a space which is well-lit if you are having a video conference - it is important that your GP is able to see you clearly. As well as helping identify any physical symptoms, it also aids communication.
4. Be clear on the next steps
It is advisable to take notes during the consultation. Make sure you are clear on the treatment plan and the next steps. You should ensure that you have understood everything that has been said by the GP. It is possible that the GP may want to send you follow-up information or any relevant links, so have a pen and paper with you ready to take any notes.
5. Know your pharmacy
Have the name and address of your local pharmacy ready for prescriptions to be sent to. Choose somewhere where you can easily collect your prescriptions. Opening hours for most pharmacies can be found online.
6. Don’t be scared to get a second opinion
If you are uncertain about the feedback given by the assigned GP, do not be afraid to book a second consultation with a different health professional.
Equipsme members can book a GP appointment any time of the day or night by phone, via the Equipsme App or the member portal. Our GP service provider, HealthHero, will arrange an appointment for you as quickly as possible. Appointments are typically booked within a few hours.
For more information about our health insurance plans visit our plans page.