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GP at Hand isn’t just a London thing

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I can understand if some readers might think we are being too London-centric by focusing so much attention on Babylon’s GP at Hand practice.

As you may or may not know, the practice based in west London has attracted more than 30,000 patients by offering speedy video consultations on the NHS. The official review of the scheme found that patients flocking to the practice tend to be young, fit, healthy, and candidates to become PM.

These patients are leaving their current practices, who are left with older and more complex patients, which is putting strain on them – and local commissioners.

It also seems that they have been allowed to do what many practices thought they couldn’t – start a primary care network that wasn’t based on geography.

This is not just a local issue

But this is not just a local issue. Babylon have made it clear that they will be branching out to other cities in England. And it won’t just affect those cities – as they use video consultations, their service is available to people living outside those cities too.

The report concluded what we already knew – that the funding model as it stands is not appropriate to deal with this new model of primary care.

As Babylon move outside of London, more young, healthy patients will be signing up to the service – and it may be your practice whose funding suffers.

Jaimie Kaffash is editor of Pulse. Follow him on Twitter @jkaffash or email him at