Safe care delivered in general practice every day - College responds to new study

Dr Victoria Tzortziou-Brown, Vice Chair of the Royal College of GPs, appears in today’s Independent and Mail Online responding to the latest study on the safety of remote consultations in general practice. Dr Victoria Tzortziou-Brown said:

“The majority of consultations in general practice - more than 70% in September - are carried out in person. But a lot of high quality, safe care is delivered remotely in general practice on a daily basis, as this research makes clear.

“It is important that GPs and our teams are able to offer patients access to our services in a variety of ways, and whilst many patients prefer to see their GP face to face, many appreciate the convenience that remote consulting offers. The College's position is that the method of consulting should be a shared decision between clinician and patient based on clinical need, and clearly remote consultations will be more appropriate for some patients than others.

"Whilst there is risk associated with all medical consultations, delivering remote care comes with specific challenges and limitations, as highlighted by this research. It makes a number of helpful recommendations in terms of identifying patients for whom remote care may not be appropriate and to support GP teams to ensure remote consultations are delivered as safely as possible.

“GPs and our teams are working under intense workload and workforce pressures which create challenges giving patients the care they need. Our recent manifesto outlines seven solutions that will help us increase the number of our GPs and ensure sufficient time and space within our practices to provide timely, safe and appropriate care to our patients and safeguard the future of general practice and the wider NHS.”

Further information

RCGP Press office: 0203 188 7659

Notes to editors

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 54,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.