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GPs asked to report workload issues directly to LMC via new app

Londonwide LMCs have launched an app for GPs to send reports of problems to their representatives in ‘real time’.

The ‘Beam to LMC’ app gives doctors a ‘quick and easy’ way to highlight some of the problems they face in their day-to-day practices, the LMCs said.

Data from the app will be used to build an overall picture of the demands being placed on practices. This will to enable a more targeted approach to support and information sharing, they said.

Londonwide LMCs say they regularly raise concerns on issues such as unresourced work, inappropriate transfers of care from hospitals and unreasonable demands from commissioners and the more informed they are the more they are able to push to resolve these problems.

Using the app, GPs are able to forward an email, snap a picture of a document or write a quick message. The app explicitly asks for any patient identifiable information to be anonymised or removed before being submitted.

Dr Michelle Drage, chief executive of Londonwide LMCs, said: ‘To do our job of representing GPs and practices we need to know where the pressure on them is coming from and they need to be able to tell us in a quick and easy way.

‘With Beam to LMC it takes just three clicks for a clinician or practice manager to send us in-the-moment snapshots of information related to bureaucratic hassle or workload dumping. This feeds into our understanding of what is being asked of practices by commissioners, hospitals and others.’

Dr Farah Jameel, BMA GP committee executive team policy lead for workload and a North London GP, said: ‘This is an excellent initiative that allows overstretched practices to easily and efficiently log requests for inappropriate or unresourced work.’

She said this builds on the changes made to the hospital contract to stop ‘workload dump’ and ‘will enable the LMC to act collectively on behalf of practices at addressing workload burden’.

‘Accepting such unresourced work risks undermining the quality of patient care by taking GPs and their staff away from the core needs of their patients. It also wastes valuable appointments which should be kept available for ill patients who need to see their GP,’ she said.