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Almost eight in 10 patients now able to download NHS app

Nearly eight in 10 patients can now download the NHS app, according to official figures.

The app, which was developed by NHS Digital and NHS England, allows patients to access their GP record, book an appointment, order repeat prescriptions and access NHS 111 online. 

According to NHS Digital, all GP practices will be connected to the app by 1 July 2019.

Public health and primary care minister Seema Kennedy revealed last week in Parliament that 77% of the population registered with a GP can now access the NHS app. 

Liberal Democrat MP Jo Swinson asked health and social care secretary Matt Hancock what ‘proportion of people are able to book GP appointments through the NHS app’.

In response, Ms Kennedy said: ‘We are in the process of connecting each of the 7,245 general practitioner (GP) practices with the NHS App and the ability to book GP appointments is a functionality that must be enabled locally in each practice.

‘77% of the GP registered population can now download the app.’

Pulse reported on 28 May this year that 52% of GP practices were using the app.

Last year, a survey of over 1,000 GPs found that 61% of GPs were concerned the app would increase their workload rather than reduce it.

But a pilot of the app later showed that it had ‘no negative impact’ on GP practices.

However, a leaked memo in March showed many online GP providers did not have the technology to connect to the NHS app.