Registrations to Patient Access, which offers clinically-authored health information and GP services including video appointments, escalated rapidly in March and April – with 650,000 new sign-ups during the pandemic peak.
Backed by UK health tech leader EMIS Group, Patient Access is the leading health app in the UK. It is providing information and support to patients during the pandemic – as well as reducing pressure on GPs by enabling patients to manage their own appointments and repeat medication.
A new coronavirus symptom checker – added in mid-March – has seen more than 700,000 views from 300,000 users as people seek trusted information in the pandemic. 2.6m people have accessed a separate coronavirus hub, generating 3.4m views.
Patient Access is free to use and, unlike other apps, allows patients to benefit from the convenience of digital services while staying with their existing NHS GP practice.
Dr Sarah Jarvis, clinical director at Patient, said: “It’s clear from these statistics that the pandemic has rapidly changed attitudes to digital healthcare – quite possibly for good.
“Without the usual access to their GP, people have realised that digital alternatives are quick and easy to use – and can give them immediate help and reassurance in these very worrying times.
“GPs and the wider health service are also seeing the benefit, as non-urgent demand reduces and clinicians’ time is freed up to focus on those who most need their help."