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Patients back email consultations

By Laura Montini

Sixty-four percent of patients would like to receive a diagnosis from their GP by email, according to a new survey.

The survey of 1,000 UK consumers by online market research company Lightspeed Research found widespread support for greater 'on demand' interaction with GPs. But only 14 percent of those surveyed said they currently contact their GP by email.

68 percent of patients would like to use their own GP's website to book appointments, and over half prefer to book them online, the survey found.

All age groups indicated they would like to use the Internet to increase communication with their GP, including those patients over 55 years old. Fifty-seven percent said they would like to have email consultations, and 48 percent said they would participate in live online chats with GPs.

Pulse reported last June that plans for expansion of the Healthspace Communicator tool, a multi-feature online communication tool launched by the Department of Health, had been put on hold amid fears over costs and low patient take-up.

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