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Online consultations - questions about medical indemnity

Up to 2. New consultation types
February 01. 2018
Robert Varnam

The three main medical defence organisations have issued clarifications for GPs about online consultations. Information is available at www.gponline.com/online-consultations-medical-indemnity/article/1454334

The main points emphasised by the indemnity providers are:

  • Additional premiums are not required for GPs who consult with their NHS patients online (just as for phone consultations, responding to patient letters or other forms of 'remote' contact).

  • Some providers are asking practices to inform them if they consult online or by phone - they are in the process of writing to practices. 
  • The same principles of good clinical practice should apply in online consultations as when speaking to a patient on the phone or responding to another non-face-to-face contact. This includes a reminder that the GP should see the patient in person if clinically appropriate, and should follow GMC and CQC requirements for good care. This includes checking patient agreement with management plans.

  • In some situations, GPs should contact their indemnity provider because additional cover may be required. This includes:
    • if non-GPs are consulting by remote means
    • if consultations will be undertaken without access to the patient's record
    • if it is proposed to consult online with patients under the age of 16
    • if it is proposed to consult privately

 

 

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