Pulse’s most influential GP from last year, Dr Mobasher Butt is still driving forward the digital-first approach to general practice.
The chief medical officer of Babylon, which powers GP at Hand – the west London-based practice that offers primarily online and video consultations – saw the company expand its NHS service to Birmingham earlier this summer following approval from commissioners.
Further afield, Babylon also operates out of Rwanda, and Dr Butt says the company is planning on launching in at least 10 more countries, starting with North America. It will be helped by millions of pounds of funding from Saudi-backed investors.
GP at Hand continues to be criticised by GP leaders, who say the practice’s model cherry-picks patients – of which it has 50,000 so far.
But despite this, Babylon’s influence is obvious. The new model prompted an NHS England review of funding for out-of-area patient registrations – which GP at Hand utilises – resulting in proposals to force practices to open new surgeries when they have a sizeable patient population in the CCG, and to delay funding to practices for new patients until they have been registered for a set period.
GP at Hand, which already has patients signed up from across the country, is also extending its reach by setting set up as its own primary care network. GPs have argued this goes against requirements for networks to serve patients in the same geographical location. It seems GP at Hand is not done with setting precedents yet – welcomed or not.
Why influential: Developed a model that is forcing the Government to review the GP contract
What others say: ‘Passionate about using technology in healthcare’
Random fact: Is a snowboarding fanatic