Telephone, video and email consultations

Things to consider before a telephone, video or email consultation


1   What type of consultation do you need? e.g. a video consultation will give you visual contact with the doctor.      

2   If you are having a video consultation, do you have a computer, tablet device or a ‘smart’ phone with a camera and microphone?

      Test this equipment is working in advance of the consultation. Test your audio and video are working before the call.

3   Ask how long an appointment may take and who it is with (e.g. GP, nurse).

4   When booking your consultation, ask if there is anything that you need to know about or do, or if there is any specific guidance or

      links that you need.

5   Do you want a family member or carer to be present?

6   Do you have a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed for the consultation?

7   Does your GP practice have the most up to date email and phone numbers?

8   Plan for the consultation using the ‘Visiting your GP or a pharmacist’ section of the Guide and Form D.

Things to consider at the time of the telephone, video or email consultation.


1    Wait by your phone or other device at the time of your consultation or follow a link if you have been sent one by your practice.

2    If you are using a video consultation, when the call begins say “Hello” and wave to check that you can see and hear the doctor or

      nurse. You may have to check that your device sound and picture are working.

3    Double check that the doctor or nurse has your phone number in case the connection fails and they need to call you.

4    Double check that you have the name of the doctor or nurse you are talking to.

5    At the beginning of the consultation your healthcare professional may check your identity (for example your name and date of

       birth) to confirm they are talking to the correct person.

6    Consider what you want to discuss and what you have planned in the ‘Visiting your GP or a pharmacist’ section of the Guide and

       Form D as you could with a face to face consultation.

7    Use the screen camera to show things you might need to discuss (e.g. a rash).

8    If you are cut off and not able to reconnect, wait for a phone call. You may wish to double check what your practice does in this

       situation at the start of the call.

9    Consider what are the next steps for treatment and management.

10  Write down any advice or instructions using ‘Things to consider after your consultation’ section of the Guide and Forms E and F.

11   Make sure you understand the next steps (e.g. where to take a specimen and who to leave it with).

12   Make sure you know the opening and closing times of the GP practice or pharmacy.

13   Ask any questions you have.

14   When the consultation ends and you have both said goodbye then disconnect.

Personal details & medical conditions

Personal details &
medical conditions

Create a personalised record

University of Manchester
Salford Royal
Funded by NIHR