NHS England
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Millions more GP appointments in April than before pandemic

GP teams delivered more than 30 million appointments for patients last month (April 2024), up by almost a quarter on the same period before the pandemic.

NHS data published today shows there were around 30.5 million appointments delivered by GPs and their teams in just one month, compared with 24.5 million in April 2019 – an increase of six million (24.5%).

On average, thanks to the hard work of GPs and their staff, the NHS is now offering more than 1.4 million GP practice appointments every working day.

NHS staff continue to exceed ambitions to provide 50 million more appointments by March 2024 with the figures showing that GPs and their teams have delivered an extra 62.8 million appointments (370.1 million excluding Covid vaccinations) or 69.2 million (376.5 million including Covid vaccinations) over the last year compared to 2018/19.

Almost every (98%) GP practice in England have now upgraded their phone tech thanks to the ambitious blueprint with the move meaning that phone lines can be expanded and won’t ever be engaged.

The remaining practices are agreeing dates within the next month for upgrades to happen with tech suppliers.

Every GP practice must offer face to face appointments as well as telephone and online consultations, with some patients choosing remote appointments where it is clinically appropriate and more convenient for them. Today’s data shows almost two-thirds of appointments took place face-to-face (65.4%) in April.

Dr Amanda Doyle, national director for primary care, NHS England said: “Thanks to GPs and their hardworking teams, millions more appointments are being delivered every month compared to before the pandemic with plans in place to improve access even further.

“Every GP practice is upgrading their telephone systems to make it easier for patients to contact their surgery, while patients can use the NHS app to order repeat prescriptions and view their test results without needing to contact their family doctor.

“We know there is more to do to make it easier for patients to access GP services and that’s why, building on the successes so far of the primary care access recovery plan, we continue to expand pharmacy services and offer patients more choice in how they access care.”

Channel website: https://www.england.nhs.uk/

Original article link: https://www.england.nhs.uk/2024/05/millions-more-gp-appointments-in-april-than-before-pandemic/

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