AI improves GP access for thousands of patients in Hull and York

Klinik Healthcare Solutions' Access online system helps GPs to better triage patients

The Klinik Access online system uses AI technology to assess patient flow

Up to 60,000 patients across Hull and York will now be able to enjoy better access to their GP, thanks to new cutting-edge online triage technology from Finnish-based Klinik Healthcare Solutions.

Haxby Group, which manages 11 GP surgeries, has become the first in the UK to switch over to the Klinik Access online system.

Patients across the country are increasingly finding it more difficult to get hold of their GP.

And Haxby Group has addressed this trend by offering patients a simple online assessment to help streamline patient flow.

Using an innovative medical artificial algorithm, the Klinik Access solution combines an AI-infused symptom checking and urgency assessment to prioritise patient care.

“Many requests are simply too nuanced for the administrative teams to manage over the phone,” explains Dr Thomas Patel-Campbell, Haxby Group GP partner and chief clinical information officer.

Many requests are simply too nuanced for the administrative teams to manage over the phone

“For instance, paramedic and physio background members of the team are qualified to select who needs to see them, but a non-clinical receptionist can’t do that.”

The Klinik system sends these requests directly to Haxby Group’s urgent care team so they can decide the urgency of the case and how it should be treated.

The system was introduced firstly for patients at two of its York surgeries and patient uptake of the service has been impressive.

Results show the weekly average of online enquiries had risen from 0.1% at the start, to 24% in under two months of the new system going live.

And 86% of patients rated the new online triage system as ‘good’ or ‘excellent’.

Haxby Group reception manager, Kelly Butterfield, said the system has helped her team improve communication with patients.

“In many instances, patients felt we were a barrier to their GP,” she added.

“Now, we can explain this new solution will put their care needs first, rather than simply working on a first-come-first-served basis.”

We believe that tools like optimal triage systems that improve patient management and accurate data accumulation for future planning, are paramount to primary care services

The new system removes these frustrations by allowing doctors to review their patients’ enquiries and call them back that same day with a plan of care

Available 24/7, the online service has resulted in patients feeling that they have gained contact with their own GP and are no longer taking up valuable appointments needed for others.

Doctor-patient relationships are also improving and consultation times have speeded up.

And more-indepth pre-appointment information inputted into the Klinik system has resulted in medical teams being increasingly knowledgeable upon consultation, allowing patients time to make their concerns and expectations clear.

“Haxby Group, like many GP providers, faced the challenge of delivering a better patient experience and improve efficiencies” says Ben Wood, director of operations and sales for Klinik Healthcare Solutions UK.

“It’s great to see our technology and service levels transferring safely and effectively from a Finnish healthcare environment to an NHS primary care setting.

“The NHS has a lot of pressure on it to reduce costs and burdens on resources; and Klinik’s focus is to support GPs and the NHS in relieving some of this pressure through digital technologies.

It’s great to see our technology and service levels transferring safely and effectively from a Finnish healthcare environment to an NHS primary care setting

“We believe that tools like optimal triage systems that improve patient management and accurate data accumulation for future planning, are paramount to primary care services.”

Dr Patel-Campbell adds: “Unlike other, more-established companies, Klinik genuinely understood what does and doesn’t work when it comes to a working patient triage environment.

“And its capability to make the package bespoke was also a huge pull, that’s not something you often find in primary care.”

Further rollouts of the Klinik Access solution are expected in the coming months in Lancashire, Hull and the South East.

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