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Patients in health secretary’s constituency ‘unaware’ of online GP services



Patients in health secretary Jeremy Hunt’s South West Surrey constituency are being urged to access more GP services online.

Healthwatch Surrey is visiting GP practices across the area as part of a county-wide campaign to boost patients’ confidence about the online offering and show them how it can save them time.

Healthwatch said this comes as a report it published in June found ‘many people are unaware of alternative ways to access information and advice on health issues’.

It said this particularly included ‘the ability to access out-of-hours GP appointments through NHS 111 and the use of online GP appointment booking services’.

The news comes as Mr Hunt has been a champion of online appointment booking, including making it a contractual requirement for practices.

He also launched the 2013 bid for the NHS as a whole to go ‘paperless’ by 2018.