During the height of the UK lockdown, many if not all, GP surgeries used video appointments instead of face-to-face appointments in the UK. This may be set to continue now that the UK is back in lockdown. It could also change the way we have GP appointments forever. However, the continued use of online appointments could also lead to a rise in medical negligence.
In Wales, the video consultation service has already been extended to optometrists, pharmacists and dentists in Wales, and a report by the BBC shows that, in Wales, more than 70% of GP practices are offering the video service. This may also be a future aspect that GPs in the rest of the UK also roll out to help the backlog of appointments caused by the pandemic.
Online Appointments and Medical Negligence
However efficient and helpful online appointments can be, there is only so much a Doctor can do or see over video. This could affect the number of mistakes made and may even cause more delays in diagnosis, treatment, and other problems. Doctors must continue to offer mainly face-to-face appointments to stop these mistakes potentially being made.
Misdiagnosis and Delays in Diagnosis
Misdiagnosis and delays in diagnosis are some of the most common enquiries we get, and, if most Doctors appointments continue to mainly take place online, there could be a rise in these types of cases. This is because there is only so much that a Doctor can see online. But if no follow-up appointments are made, for example, then the correct diagnosis could be delayed further.
Delays in Treatment
Another aspect that could be affected by the continuation of online appointments is treatment. With online consultations, Doctors could misunderstand symptoms, or not pick them up. This could lead to delays in treatment, or patients not having treatment at all.
Other Potential Issues
There are also other issues that could arise from online Doctors’ appointments. These include prescription errors, delays in medication, dental negligence, errors in mental health treatment, and more.
Accessibility is another potential issue that may arise. Some of the more vulnerable people in society may not find online Doctors’ appointments very accessible. This includes elderly and disabled patients. Online appointments require access to a smartphone or tablet. This is something that some vulnerable people may not have access to, or be able to use easily. This is another reason why the majority of appointments should continue to be face-to-face.
If You Have Experienced Medical Negligence After Online Appointments
If you or a loved one have experienced medical negligence, then claiming may not be the first thing on your mind. However, the solicitors we work with can help ease your mind. This includes easing your mind about any financial matters that can arise with medical negligence. Contact us today to see whether you are able to make a claim.
How We Can Help
Here at The Medical Negligence Experts, we work with solicitors who have years of experience dealing with all manner of medical negligence claims. This includes misdiagnosis or diagnosis delays. Contact us today by filling in our contact form, or by calling us on 01614138761 to speak to one of our friendly knowledgeable advisors.