Before and after weights will answer the question.
I'm not offering guidance on how to do this, though
125 posts • joined 12 Jun 2007
But I had to write a medical report on a woman who was hit by a bus some 5 years ago and who consequently died. The solicitors wanted to know if there was anything in her medical records that suggested that she might have fallen off her perch prematurely (other than human: bus altercation).
In bold letters the solicitors advised me that I need not examine the patient.
In 30 years as a GP, I found that the big users of the NHS fell into a number of groups, the elderly being one of the biggest groups. My father (in his 90s) can cope with email, but many of the elderly can't, or don't even have a computer or smartphone. Many of those who do have a mobile phone keep it in the cast in case of vehicle breakdown and don't otherwise turn it on.
Our current health secretary seems obsessed with computers, but hasn't worked out how a GP can use Skype to examine a patient, check a blood pressure, or measure a temperature. In other words, he hasn't a clue about how doctors work. We are all doomed.
As someone who has worked for over 30 years as a GP, let me say that telephone consultations only work for (at best) 50% of consultations. We tried it all.... search on-line for "Doctor First" to see how it might happen. Half of the consultations need an examination, so you lose time on the phone / Skype and then do the normal consultation. Being too available caused consultation figures to rocket ( hello doctor, I've got shampoo in my eyes, what can I do? ) and we lost an experienced GP for 6 months with stress.
Increasing litigation means that no doctor wants to take a risk, so the fail-safe is to examine patients to at least put yourself in a position to make a diagnosis which is defensible in court /coroner's court.
I can only speak for England, but you the taxpayer provide ALL GPs with computers and software. And it's all Windows based. I get no choice over hardware, clinical software or even antivirus. And the electronic booking system is only compatible with Internet Explorer... and not even the most recent versions.
We are all doomed
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