NHS Doctors Demand For WFH Setup, Affirms They Can Diagnose Patients by ‘Computer on Wheels’

NHS doctors want to be able to work from home, even though the worst of Covid has blown over.

Hospital consultants say the pandemic has proved they can safely care for patients on wards through a ‘computer on wheels’.

The British Medical Association has now urged ministers to ‘seriously’ consider the benefits of a hybrid-working model. The union said: ‘The ability of some doctors to work remotely at certain times in the pandemic should be acknowledged.’

The BMA acknowledged greater remote working as a ‘benefit’ of the pandemic, despite concluding it ‘failed to safeguard, promote, and support’ the medical profession.

One-fifth of its members named remote working as one of their top three strategies for dealing with the pandemic’s long-term effects on the workforce.

Being able to be carried around virtually on wards, said to one medic who commented in the BMA assessment, ‘worked well for shielding consultants.’

The same member added: ‘The use of remote working had also helped to stem burnout hugely, especially for parents.’

The BMA’s call for flexible working comes as No10 continues to crack down on WFH, with ministers attempting to jumpstart the commuter economy in order to enhance productivity and revitalise the country’s town and city centres.

Another GP in the BMA’s new study noted that remote consultations demonstrated what could be done without seeing patients in person.

‘Remote consultation really helped to show how much can be achieved without face-to-face appointment,’ they said. 

‘Contrary to the Government and media, this system was a very effective way to triage and so an option for the triaging clinician to work from home.’

Thousands of people have complained about not being able to meet their doctor in person.

Remote consultations, according to campaigners, increase the chance of GPs overlooking indicators of serious illnesses.

This is especially true for some fragile patients, such as those with dementia, who may find it difficult to converse remotely.

Working from home is currently being discouraged by No10, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson claiming that it reduces productivity since employees waste time roaming around munching and forgetting what they are doing.

Mr Johnson’s remarks follow Cabinet minister Jacob Rees-push Mogg’s to send civil employees back to their Whitehall desks and abolish the culture of working from home in government departments.

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