eConsult enables NHS-based GP practices to offer online consultations to their patients. This allows patients to submit their symptoms or requests to their own GP electronically and offers around the clock NHS self-help information, signposting to services and a symptom checker. eConsult is the most widely used digital and online triage tool in NHS primary care, built by NHS GPs for NHS patients, designed to enhance patient access, improve practice efficiencies and signpost patients to the right place at the right time for their care. Takeup has been rapid with over 3,200 practices across the UK now using eConsult in some way. Anecdotally use, take up and commitment to eConsult varies from practice to practice. Within CAV UHB’s area there are some practices which are not using eConsult and some have changed their model of delivery to be focussed on eConsult.
The aim of the project is to conduct a discovery on the usage, good practice, success factors, barriers and challenges to the adoption and usage of eConsult within primary care. TEC Cymru will work with GP practices across CAV UHB initially, interviewing GPs and practice teams to understand their experiences in adopting eConsult. The intention is that the output will be a discovery report which will collate the feedback to identify good practice, success factors, barriers and challenges which will be used by CAV UHB and other organisations to provide improved support for the implementation of eConsult.
Cardiff and Vale UHB will work with primary care clusters and leads in their area to identify the appropriate participants for the discovery review. The intention is that we will also identify another Health Board to participate in this review, preferably in a more rural area. This will enable the discovery review to compare experiences across a wider population, geography and demography, improving the understanding and evaluation.
TEC Cymru will conduct the discovery review – a Phase 0 study according to our Research and Evaluation Framework. TEC Cymru will use a mixed methodology to:
- Conduct a Literature Review
- Conduct interviews and surveys with identified participants
- Interviews and focus groups will be facilitated and analysed by the TEC Cymru team
- Collate the findings and develop recommendations in a discovery report to be agreed between the partners before dissemination
Currently, this project is in the beginning stages and the project brief is being completed.
- Cardiff and Vale University Health Board
Cardiff and Vale UHB
GP practices across Cardiff
Project Kick Off
In February 2022 a fact finding workshop with all parties to inform next milestone took place.
by March 2022 the project brief should be approved and the resources, project, clinical leads, roles and responsibilities will be in place. Furthermore, the project plan will be complete and the project approach agreed. Governance and assurance measures will be in place.
Phase 0 – Discovery and Design complete
By May 2022 the project discovery should be complete. For example:
- Benefits identified and mapped
- The ‘current state’ review of business processes, scenarios and users complete.
- The current challenges, impacts, burdens upon systems should be understood.
- Retrospective data captured (interviews and focus groups with users and stakeholders)
- Evaluation design eg data capture options
- Impact of regulations and standards understood.
- Information flows, documentation, data spec and technologies completed.
- Phase 0 Discovery Report completed covering: Qualitative and Quantitative Report with interviews and quotes from users, identified use, value and benefits