Consultant gyaenecologist and obstetrician and Founder of Dr Morton's - the medical helpline.
I can reassure you that telephone consulting is safe. I am sure it is as safe in general practice as it is in gynaecology, which is the specialisation of my telemedicine business. Our GPs and gynaecologists are not young disillusioned doctors but rather experienced doctors who know that it is ridiculous for people to take time off work and to wait a fortnight for a face to face. Women often put up with their problems for want of being a nuisance to their hard-pressed GP. I don't agree with the Babylon model of patients de-registering with their GP. We always write to the NHS GP and we all work tirelessly in the NHS as well as our telemedicine venture. We hold great educational meetings and take governance very seriously. Why not check us out Dr Mann?
I have to declare a conflict of interest here as I founded an online service which offers GP telephone and email consultations; and very importantly, access to gynaecologists by phone. My GP trainees have just changed over after 4 months with us. I barely had time to get to know them. They can barely have had time to touch the surface of O and G. How can they really provide good care in the community with such a short experience? I asked at the LFG 'Surely it should be extended back to 6 months?' but was told that women's health is not even compulsory. Is it small wonder that the most ridiculous referrals for next to nothing are made to the hospital and huge numbers of unnecessary scans are requested? This all costs a huge amount of money and wastes women's time and their employer's money. It almost certainly contributes to the Gender Pay Gap or as I call it, the Gender Career Progression Gap. Surely access to specialists remotely is the right thing, saving the face to face for when it's needed. It can be done safely and should be done.
Please don't tar everyone with the same brush. Dr Morton's helpline prescribes no opiate painkillers nor any other medication with street value at all. We take antibiotic stewardship very seriously. Safe, Effective, well-led, caring and responsive is extremely important to us, and won after huge attention to governance and service design. Our patients all give details of their own GP and we communicate with them. People should choose their telephone doctor service very carefully.