What is Total Triage?
It means that both clinical and administrative queries received via eConsult will be assessed and a decision will be taken to the most appropriate course of action. For instance, arranging an appointment, organising investigations or an administrative task to be carried out.
What is eConsult?
It is an online form that you complete detailing your request both clinical and administrative. The form can also be completed on your smartphone and tablet via the NHS App or by going to the Sidcup Medical Centre's homepage. It is an NHS-approved 'digital triage and patient history taking tool', or it could simply be described as a form that guides patients through a series of specific questions in relation to the issue that has been selected. The eConsult has been designed to enhance patient access, improve practice efficiency and signpost patients to the right place at the right time for their care.
Nurse appointments can be booked directly with the practice, you do not need to complete an eConsult.
eConsults are self-care from 18:30pm on Friday through to 08:00am Monday (including bank holidays).
What are the benefits of using eConsult?
- Accessible 24/7.
- No need to wait on the phone.
- Complete an eConsult at a pace that suits you. It asks the same questions that a doctor would in a consultation, but you will have more time to think about your answer. You can also add pictures if appropriate.
- Your request may be resolved with a telephone call, saving you a trip to the surgery.
- Medical advice is available on eConsult. It includes self-care information, pharmacy advice and an online symptom checker.
- Opportunity for your doctor to plan investigations before seeing you meaning one appointment rather than two.
Why is eConsult great for the Sidcup Medical Centre team?
- Admin queries get filtered directly to the team that handles them.
- Knowing a patients symptoms upfront helps the doctor prioritise patient needs efficiently.
One appointment - one problem
Your eConsult will be triaged and an appropriate appointment will be made for you. We will therefore not be able to help you with any other issues that you bring up during this appointment as sufficient time has not be allocated for us to do this.
Patients who arrive for a face to face appointment more than ten minutes late may be asked to re-book their appointment. The doctor, nurse practitioner or nurse is under no obligation to see a patient who arrives late and it is at their discretion.
We use an automated system to send out text reminders to our patients about their appointments. Replies to appointment reminders are not monitored. However, replying 'Cancel' will cancel your appointment. We ask that patients notify us if they change their mobile number so that our records are always fully up to date. We also use this text reminder service to invite patients in for medical reviews. You are able to opt out of this service by contacting the surgery and requesting this be done.