With the second wave of Covid-19 now in full flow and health services once again under increasing pressure, concerns are rising about changes to GP appointment processes. In many practices, the usual phone call to a surgery to make an appointment to see a doctor is, in many cases, being replaced with online requests as the primary method of making an appointment.
Many patients are worried that this change makes it more difficult to get an appointment if they do not have access to the internet or do not feel comfortable using it.
Liz Smith, Scottish Conservative MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, said: “In recent days, l have been approached by several constituents who are worried about these changes which advise patients who wish to make an appointment that they will have to make an online booking rather than phone in to the surgery. Clearly, this means being able to access online and also some form-filling.
“Not surprisingly, this is causing significant concern and anxiety not least because it has a disproportionate and detrimental effect on those patients who are older and more vulnerable and who do not have access to or do not feel comfortable using online appointment procedures. I will be raising this issue in Parliament this week.”