How to safely follow up a patient in general practice

5th September 2015 by Dr Rachel Birch

How to safely follow up a patient in general practice

Whether it’s for a learning need, for your annual NHS appraisal, or because you’ve had a change of heart, it’s important for us as professionals to do, so doing it safely is of paramount importance.

One of the difficulties in doing locum work is that it is difficult to follow-up the outcomes of patients you have seen. This is especially problematic in relation to short-term sessional GP positions; however, provided that there are appropriate safeguards in relation to consent and confidentiality, then there is no reason why one cannot follow up a patient.

The reasons for wanting to ascertain the final diagnosis in relation to specific patients are both out of professional interest and professional development. In addition, it demonstrates to the patient that you have an ongoing interest in their case, despite the fact that you are only working in the practice for a short period.

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