This site is intended for health professionals only

Four in 10 people ‘willing to receive GP advice through apps’

Nearly four in 10 people would be willing to receive advice from a ‘virtual’ GP through an app, while six in ten would even be prepared to see a GP in a shop, a new study has found.

A survey, carried out by PwC, of 2,000 UK consumers, patients and clinicians has revealed that a trend is growing where ‘IT-savvy consumers’ are willing to have their care delivered outside traditional GP practices. 

The study found that 38% of those surveyed would be willing to have a GP consultation through an app on their smartphones and tablets, 60% would be prepared to see a GP in a retail store during their shopping trips and 55% would even take a urine test in a shop.

At the same time, 80% of 18-34 year-olds said they would be happy to receive treatment in a high street store or pharmacy.

Alan Milburn, chair of the health industries oversight board at PwC, said: ‘The old relationship between patients and clinicians is giving way to a new one. New entrants from outside the traditional health sector are moving onto the pitch and disrupting the old rules of the game, often with ground-breaking ideas. This is a revolution that can only pick up speed in the years to come.’ 

The healthcare apps and wearables sectors are expected to be worth £460m and £375m respectively by 2020, compared to £100m and £125m in 2015, PwC predicts.