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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.