What our Health Voices told us about their COVID-19 health experiences
We recently sent a COVID-19-themed survey to our Health Voices, distributed at the end of May. We asked a range of questions relating to people's experiences in isolation, the nature of the response in communities and experiences in the local health system.
While some people, such as farmers, found that isolation did not impact on their lifestyles, others struggled with the lack of social connection. The majority however, found it provided an opportunity for self-reflection and education, and to enjoy time spent with families or out in nature.
More than half of those who responded had visited the doctor recently, but a minority avoided appointments because of concerns about sitting in a reception area with other people. Many people avoided the waiting room by having their consultation at home via telehealth, with more than a third finding the video or phone experience with their GP to be "excellent".
The information we received has helped us understand community perspectives during the pandemic. The results from this survey will also help us support general practice by understanding the overall concerns of patients, and their preference for a blended model of telehealth and face-to-face consultations.