The NHS will release a mobile app for booking appointments with GPs, managing prescriptions, access the 111 advice line, and viewing medical records. The app will be made for iOS and Android devices, and will begin testing in September before a nationwide rollout.
Many of the features included replicate those available through the NHS’s website, as well as by phone support with local surgeries. The government promises online-banking levels of security, due to the sensitive nature of data available on the app.
It’s hoped the app will become the standard way to book an appointment with a GP, with UK Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt saying it will, “revolutionize the way we access health services,” while comparing it to the impact mobile banking has had on the finance world.
The NHS’s app is not the only medical app available, and there are concerns over its potential effectiveness. The founder of medical app AskmyGP, Harry Longman, told the BBC online appointments will never increase the amount of GPs available, and may result in more wasted time. He claims only 30% of patients ever need a face-to-face appointment.