Boots is to pilot an in-store video GP service that, it says, could increase patient access to healthcare services.
The pharmacy multiple is working with Swedish digital healthcare provider LIVI to enable patients to see a GP by video consultation in two of its stores — one for NHS patients in Surrey and another for private patients in central London.
The video call is carried out in a pharmacy consultation room using an in-store tablet computer. A Boots pharmacist will support the patient on arrival and then offer follow-on services and medication advice after the appointment, as required.
Through the LIVI service, patients are able to collect their prescriptions from a nominated pharmacy or have them delivered to their home.
Boots says the service means customers who do not have smartphones can still use technology to see a GP.
The new GP contract announced in January 2019 states that all patients should have access to online and video consultations by 2021 and some pharmacies are already offering this service to patients.
Paul Dunne, transformation director at Boots, said the collaboration has helped make this digital model of care “a more mainstream part of the NHS and has huge potential to alleviate the growing pressure on our healthcare system”.