Remote consultations during COVID-19 and beyond
During the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual clinics and remote consultations have replaced face-to-face appointments in many settings. This brings about a unique set of challenges for healthcare professionals working with older people. This resource aims to bring together useful sources of guidance, advice and information on carrying out safe, effective and successful remote consultations.
Guidance for all settings
- How-to guide: non face-to-face clinics - UCLPartners
Includes a range of resources aimed at supporting NHS colleagues and partners in the planning and implementation of non-face-to-face models of care. Covers topics such as planning for non-face-to-face clinics, working with commissioners, leadership, governance, IT, communication with patients and evaluation.
- COVID19: video consultations and homeworking – British Medical Association (BMA)
Advice for doctors in all settings on obtaining homeworking equipment, when to consult patients via video, approved NHS tools for remote consultations and tips for running them.
- Video consultations for secondary care – NHS England
Includes guides for NHS and Foundation Trusts, staff and patients, plus FAQs and case studies.
- Clinical guide for the management of remote consultations and remote working in secondary care during the coronavirus pandemic – NICE/NHS England
This guidance for clinicians and managers outlines practical information about delivering remote consultations and other ways of remote working in secondary care
- Using online consultations in primary care: implementation toolkit – NHS England
Interactive online consultation toolkit that provides a range of ideas and options for different professionals, including clinicians, at different points in their implementation journey.
- Remote consultations: Guidance documents and top tips – RCGP
Guidance and resources for GPs including advice on best practice for remote consultations.
Multidisciplinary team (MDT)
- Remote consultations guidance under COVID-19 restrictions – Royal College of Nursing
This guidance has been developed to support nursing staff where they are being asked to see and/or treat patients via a telephone or video or other remote consultation process.
- COVID19: guide for rapid implementation of remote consultations – Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
Practical advice for physiotherapists and support workers to implement remote consultations rapidly and efficiently. Includes top tips from CSP members and a downloadable guide.
- COVID-19: Remote consultations - RCPsych
Guide to help patients get the most out of a remote consultation.
- Getting the most out of a remote consultation – Dementia UK
This leaflet has been written by dementia specialist Admiral Nurses and aims to help both a person with a diagnosis of dementia, and their family and friends, get the most out of a remote consultation.
- How has COVID19 changed the landscape of digital inclusion? – Centre for Ageing Better
This briefing looks at how COVID19 has impacted older people's internet use and sets out recommendations that will help ensure fewer people are digitally excluded.
- Remote consultation FAQs – General Medical Council (GMC)
Advice from the professional medical regulator on providing remote consultations during the pandemic, including safeguarding, consent and records management.
- Conducting remote consultations – The MDU
Medicolegal issues to be aware of when conducting remote consultations.
- Good record keeping with remote consulting MDDUS
Medical indemnifier MDDUS has seen a rise in calls from members concerned about treating patients safely in remote consultations. One way to manage risk is to ensure that record keeping is clear, sufficiently detailed, accurate and contemporaneous.
Applications and platforms
eConsult is the first online consultation service to be integrated with the NHS App. It makes form-based remote consultations available at around a quarter of GP practices in England. Patients can use this forms-based service to request GP advice without the need to book an appointment or contact your practice face-to-face or by telephone.
- Attend Anywhere/Near Me
Attend Anywhere is a video consultation appointment service currently being trialled or used by the NHS in healthcare settings across England, Wales and Scotland (known in Scotland as Near Me). It aims to reduce the need for patients to travel to appointments, while integrating into existing care pathways and workflows. The Scottish Government has published an evaluation report of Near Me.
Articles, blogs and case studies
- Factors associated with virtual care access in older adults: a cross-sectional study. Laura Liu, Zahra Goodarzi, Aaron Jones, Ron Posno, Sharon E Straus, Jennifer A Wat - Age and Ageing, Feb 2021
- Falling for virtual assessments: Advice and resources for virtual falls risk assessments: Part 1 – BGS Blog
- Falling for virtual assessments: Advice and resources for virtual falls risk assessments: Part 2 BGS Blog
- Digital lessons from COVID: Two perspectives on the journey so far – BGS Newsletter
- Digital lessons from COVID (Part 2): Apps and software fit for a pandemic – BGS Newsletter
- Three key quality considerations for remote consultations – The Health Foundation
- COVID19 and primary care – British Journal of Cardiology