GPs should help their patients prepare for going on holiday and be ‘sympathetic’ with those who approach them at the last minute, NHS England has said.
Holidaying patients are recommended to contact their registered practice remotely in the first instance, NHS England deputy medical director of primary care Dr Raj Patel added.
Speaking at the latest NHS England GP webinar, Dr Patel said: ‘As we come up to improving weather and the long days, we know that people are preferring to move around the UK even if they can’t go abroad so please help your patients prepare for this.
‘Make sure that they’ve got adequate medication, do help them plan and do be sympathetic with those people who get in contact with you quite late.’
NHS England is recommending that patients who ‘require assistance whilst away’ should contact their normal GP by phone or other virtual means ‘in the first place’ because they ‘know more about them than anyone else’, he added.
However, if patients need to see another doctor face-to-face they can do so by the standard route of temporary registration, Dr Patel said.
It comes as an independent GP app has launched the UK’s first Covid vaccination ‘passport’ feature, while GP leaders have raised concerns about increasing numbers of request for online records access.
Earlier this month, the BMA said that the Government has ‘accepted’ that any vaccine certification should have ‘minimal impact’ on GPs.
Meanwhile, the UK Government has today announced that more than a quarter of the UK’s adult population are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19.