Urgent care services - Near Me in NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde's flow navigation centre: good practice example

The redesign of urgent care programme in partnership with the National Technology Enabled Care Programme and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have developed this good practice example for the delivery of Near Me video consultations as part of urgent care services.

Next Steps

Clinical staff within the NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde FNC are currently reviewing the use of Near Me within the service as part of the ongoing aim to develop and improve patient care and experience. Current themes and initiatives include:

1. Interpreting

Historically within NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde interpreting services have been a telephone only service using language line, with British Sign Language interpreting available for face to face consultations via dedicated software. The FNC is looking at ways to include interpreting services within a Near Me consultation for patients who require this, either spoken language or British Sign Language. This would guarantee equity of access to the FNC for those who require an interpreter.

2. Violence

Linking closely with local colleagues who specialise in gender based violence, the FNC is reviewing how it can include elements of routine enquiry around domestic violence for injured patients within a Near Me consultation. The software allows clinical staff assurances as to who is present with the patient and who else is in the room during the consultation. This supports sensitive and private issues to be discussed in a safe way.

3. Audit

The FNC clinical staff believes that when compared to patients who have had a telephone consultation, patients who have a Near Me consultation are significantly less likely to be referred to the ED or MIU. The team will be working with their business intelligence colleagues in the near future to examine available data to explore whether quantitative evidence confirms this. Qualitative patient experience information is already collated by a dedicated team.

4. Referrals

The FNC is working closely with other referral agencies to ensure that Near Me consultations are a possibility when making a referral into the FNC. The use of Near Me is already being utilised across care homes within NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, ensuring that FNC clinicians will always be able to undertake a video consultation when the care home make a referral.

The team are now working with community pharmacists as they develop an inwards referral pathway from Community Pharmacy to the FNC. This may involve a follow up consultation with the patient using their own device, or community pharmacists may make Near Me facilities available within their own private consulting rooms. This will enable the pharmacists to manage patients who attend the community pharmacist initially for assessment, but where ED / Minor Injury Unit (MIU) advice may be beneficial e.g. wound and burn care.

5. Satisfaction

All FNC clinicians within NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have a background in Emergency Care or General Practice. Undertaking virtual consultations has been a learning curve for all; however there is wide agreement that a video consultation on Near Me allows for a more meaningful consultation in comparison to a telephone consultation, which is a more satisfying and rewarding process for the clinicians.

Consequently, many telephone consultations are converted to a Near Me 'Consult Now' consultation after it has been explained to the patient how useful it would be for the clinician to see their injury directly.


Email: UnscheduledCareTeam@gov.scot

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