Total Triage Model
What is Total Triage?
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, NHS England and NHS Improvement have supported all GP practices in England with the rapid implementation of a ‘total triage’ model using telephone and online consultation tools.
Total triage means that every patient contacting the practice is first triaged by a clinician who can then determine the most appropriate action for patient requests.
Total triage is important to reduce avoidable footfall in practices and protect patients and staff from the risks of infection.
Click here to watch a brief video about the Total Triage model and what to expect.
How do I access support and advice?
At Aston Healthcare we are asking that all patients complete an online consultation (called eConsult) when making contact with the practice. To access eConsult please visit our website homepage and click on the ‘eConsultation’ icon.
If you have a CLICNIAL QUERY (e.g. a new symptom, advice on current condition) that you would like support with then please click on the following link to start your consultation: Clinical Request
If you have an ADMINISTRATION QUERY (e.g. request for sick note, following up on referrals) that you would like support with then please click on the following link to start your consultation: Admin Request
You will firstly need to download the NHS App to a mobile device – you can do this by clicking here. A valid form of ID is required to register for the NHS App so please have this to hand.
What if I can’t access the internet or am unable to complete an online consultation?
It is important to us that all patients are able to access our services and access them fairly.
If you do not have internet access or are unable to complete an online consultation then we are happy to help you with this. Please call the practice and a member of our team will take your details for a ‘call back’ so we can support completing an eConsult on your behalf. Please note that our call back system starts at 10:30am and our aim is to call you back before 6:30pm on the same day. It is important that you provide us with your most up to date contact details to ensure we can get hold of you when attempting to call you back.
What should I expect during a call back?
A member of the team will introduce themselves and verify your personal details to make sure we are talking to the correct person. We will then ask you the main reason for requesting a call back as this will guide us as to which type of eConsult to complete for the clinician. You will then be asked a number of questions in relation to the reason for your call.
Please note, calls from our practice may appear as ‘No Caller ID’ or ‘Blocked’ – please ensure you answer if you are expecting a call from our team. We will try up to a maximum of 2 times only.
What type of questions will I be asked over the telephone?
When completing an eConsult on your behalf, a member of our team is presented with a number of questions that are evidence based and algorithmic. Some of these questions may be sensitive in nature and it is not the staff member being nosy! It is important that you answer all the questions as accurately as possible in order for you to get access to the right person and the right advice and to help the practice help you in the best way possible.
When should I expect a response to my eConsult?
Recent changes mean that eConsult is now open from 8:00am – 6:30pm Monday to Friday. eConsult is CLOSED outside of these hours including weekends. If you submit an eConsult between 8:00am – 1:00pm, you will receive a response from us on the same day (this will be via SMS, telephone or email). If you submit an eConsult after 1pm, you will receive a response from us by the end of the next working day.
How will you make contact with me?
Depending on the nature of your request and our response, we may contact you in various ways. For example, we may be able to process your request without having to speak to you and therefore will send you an SMS and/or email. If we need to speak to you directly, then we will contact you via telephone – please note, calls from our practice may appear as ‘No Caller ID’ or ‘Blocked’ – please ensure you answer if you are expecting a call from our team. The clinician may invite you to take part in a video consultation and if so, will provide further instructions during your call.
I don’t want to engage with the total triage model and just want to see a GP
Unfortunately, you are unable to book an appointment with a GP and will be required to follow our total triage model, starting with eConsult. We strongly believe that accessing services, advice and guidance this way is much more efficient in comparison to our previous model. It only takes up to 10 minutes to complete an eConsult and 2-3 minutes for a GP to process. Research shows that in England 70% of patient requests can be closed without the need for a face-to-face appointment which means that you may not even have to come to the surgery. Also, you can access NHS based help via eConsult anytime, even outside of surgery hours during the week.