Enabling the Patchs Telephone Assistant

Gwynneth Derere
Gwynneth Derere
  • Updated


Patchs Telephone Assistant is a revolutionary way for patients to access primary care whilst minimising workload and maintaining control of demand for GP practices.

Patients speak to the Telephone Assistant, which takes the details of their request. The message is automatically transcribed and is sent to the Patchs inbox for you to review, just like a standard Patchs online consultation.

This article describes how to enable the Patchs Telephone Assistant for practices which have purchased (or are piloting) the module.

Enabling the Telephone Assistant

  • Go to your 'Edit Practice' page
  • Go to the ‘Feature Settings’ tab
  • Scroll down to the bottom of the page where you will see a checkbox for the Telephone Assistant
  • Tick the box to enable the Telephone Assistant

If you cannot see this option, then your practice has not been enabled for this feature. Please contact us or your Advanced account manager if you need it enabled.

Doing a Test Run

  • Set the request limits for the Telephone Assistant to be greater than zero so it can start accepting requests. (This is in the normal demand management tab)
  • Choose a dummy patient that is registered in Spine (PDS) or a friendly patient that can test it for you. The patient must be registered in PDS or they will not be matched and unable to submit a request.
  • You can then call the Telephone Assistant on the number we have provided (+44XXXXXXXXXX) to submit a test request. 
  • Check that the request shows up in your practice inbox.
  • Now enable the call diversion on your telephony system - you may want to do this out of hours or put the diversion option in a non-obvious place so patients don't come through -  and repeat the dummy patient test process by calling your standard practice telephone number. Here we are checking for 2 things:
      • that the call diversion is set up properly.
      • the telephone number used to call is being sent through correctly by your telephony provider to the Telephone Assistant. If the telephone number is different from the number you called on, this will be due to the call diversion settings on your telephony service. Please adjust the settings or contact your telephony provider for help.
  • Finally, disable the call diversion on your telephony system and reset the Telephone Assistant request limits to 0 to ensure no requests are submitted prior to going live.
  • You are now ready to go live.

Going Live

  • Set the preferred request limits in the demand management tab
  • Enable the call diversion on your telephone system.
  • You are now live!

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