eConsult is an online service which allows patients to submit their symptoms or requests to their GP electronically, whilst also offering around-the-clock NHS self-help information, signposting to services and symptom checking.

All Summercroft patients can use the eConsult service for advice and/or submit an eConsult for any medical query or issue. We aim to respond to these within two working days.

Non-urgent advice: Patient Notice

From Monday 3rd August 2020, we will now be asking any patient with a routine SKIN problem or MEDICAL ISSUE WITH THEIR MEDICATION to submit an eConsult instead of a telephone or video consultation.

How it works

  • Accesses eConsult through the Summercroft website at
  • You can choose self-help or pharmacy advice for your condition and send through an admin request online or self-refer to local services.
  • If you want advice from a clinician (doctor or advanced nurse practitioner) you then complete an eConsult and submit this to Summercroft
    • If you hit a ‘red-flag’ during this process, you will be directed to seek more urgent care
  • A clinician at Summercroft will review (‘triage’) every eConsult within two working days of it being received
  • The clinician will then decide on the right care to offer you. This may be in the form of a:
    • One way e-mail (or text message) with advice or information.
    • Telephone or video consultation with a health care professional
      • For issues we consider to be more urgent, you will be contacted directly by the triaging clinician within one working day.
      • For routine issues, our reception team will contact you to offer an appointment with a clinician within the next few days.
      • For medication queries, you will be contacted by a member of our prescription team or booked an appointment with our clinical pharmacist
      • For social issues, our reception team will contact you to offer an appointment with our social prescriber
    • Face to face appointment with a health care professional from the practice (these are only likely to be offered for those requiring physical examination or have circumstances that result in them being unable to undertake a telephone or video consultation).


What if I can’t access eConsult or find myself unable to complete it?

  • If you are unable to use eConsult, for whatever reason, you or a representative can still ring our reception team who can then complete one on your behalf (whilst you are on the telephone to them).
  • If it is still not possible to complete an eConsult, we have an abbreviated version of eConsult (known as ‘eConsult lite’) which allows us to simply record your ideas, concerns and expectations about the issue you have called in about. These will be reviewed by our clinicians in the same way however it does provide us with less information about your issue, which may cause more difficulty in triaging it.

Is eConsult secure?

  • Yes. eConsult is fully compliant to the highest security standards. The eConsult you submit comes to us through a secure email address, and is then saved to your medical records in the same way any consultation you have with us is.

Why is Summercroft now using eConsult as a triage system for non-urgent skin or medication problems?

  • For many years, demand for appointments with clinicians has outstripped supply, and this is likely to continue to increase as our population continues to age, with the complex co-morbidity that can accompany this, as well as the increase in the number of long-term conditions now managed by primary care (GPs) rather than secondary care (hospitals).
  • Not all patient queries require an appointment with a clinician; many can be managed quickly and easily by having all the information about your problem in front of us to enable us to correctly advise you or offer treatment.
  • For those who require a further telephone, video or face-to-face appointment, having a patient’s story up-front means we can quickly decide on the next steps that are most appropriate for our patients, ensuring they get the right person and right treatment first time round.
  • Owing to the recent pandemic of covid-19, it is likely that we will be continuing telephone and video appointments for some months. eConsult will therefore reduce the amount of time patients need to spend waiting for calls and answering questions about their problem on the telephone.
  • For many issues, including lumps, bumps and rashes, eConsult allows you to attach photographs and send these in with your eConsult for us to look at in advance.

Can I request a specific doctor to deal with my problem?

  • Yes. Whilst the initial review of your eConsult will be dealt with by the clinicians who are processing them that day, for those who require a further telephone, video or face-to-face follow-up, you can request this to be with a specific doctor. Bear in mind this may not offer you the quickest appointment at times.

What if my problem is urgent?

  • If you are unwell, or have an issue you feel needs an urgent (same day) telephone appointment with a clinician, please ring our reception team who can assess your problem against our ‘urgent care’ triage system. If our reception team agrees you need to speak to a clinician that day, they will place you on our same-day call back (“duty”) system.

Access eConsult

Contact your GP Online