Thursday, 24 January 2008

Consultation Types


Every encounter or 'Consultation' that we have with patients in Vision should be categorised using an appropriate Consultation Type. For example, 'Telephone call to a patient', or 'Surgery Consultation'.

Where does this get recorded?

Vision 3 lets us choose the Consultation Type from the 'Consultation Form' as shown below.

Depending on how Vision 3 is setup for you, you may see this form at the start or end of a consultation. Highlighted above is the 'Type of Consultation' field, and it is this one we need to change to a type that reflects what type of encounter occurred.

What type should I use?

Vision 3 has a large number of Consultation Types available. We want to try and only use a few of these as outlined below.


Use this for patient administrative tasks such as social security reports and typing of letters.

Acute Visit

Used by clinical staff for recording Home Visits.

Casualty Attendance

Should be used for storing any A&E attendance correspondence or coding.


May be used for the Drugs Clinic, or other specific Clinics that are run. We are unlikely to need to use this often, as we do not run with separate chronic disease clinics.

Discharge Details

Useful for updating the medication record or adding Read Codes from a discharge letter from hospital or Out Patients.

Emergency Consultation

Used by clinical staff for emergency consultations. We may elect just to use 'Surgery Consultation' for all of these, as with the Book on the Day appointments it is difficult to define some consultations as Routine and others as Emergency. Nevertheless, some consultations do appear to fall into this category and it should be used when the clinician considers it to be appropriate.

Letter from Out Patients

Useful for consultations that are storing or coding outcomes from Out Patient departments, including prescriptions.

Medicine Management

For medication changes, re authorisations and reviews.

Out of Hours, Non Practice

May be used for recording NHS24 and GP OOH contacts.

Repeat Issue

Should be used by reception staff when issuing repeats.

Results Recording

For recording bloods or other test results.

Surgery Consultation

Used by clinicians and health care assistants for face to face encounters with patients.

Telephone Call to / from a patient

Used for recording telephone encounters. This could be usefully used by reception staff also. Use 'Telephone call from a Patient' for phoned visit requests, even if it is the patient's carer making the request.

Third Party

Any encounter about the patient but without them being present.

Selecting the Consultation Type

This can be done with the mouse to drop down the menu:

But, more usefully, you can quickly get to the correct one by pressing the first letter of the Consultation Type. e.g. Pressing 't' will change the type to 'Telephone Call from a Patient' and pressing 't' again will select this next type beginning with 't', i.e. 'Telephone call to a patient'.

Changing the Consultation Details

By double clicking on the 'Status bar' at the bottom right of Vision 3 Consultations Manager, you can make the Consultation Details form appear again.

Why all this matters

This is important because:

  • When we scan a record we can see what types of encounter the patient has had with the practice
  • We can sort and filter by the consultation type to show, e.g. only Results Recording
  • Our Home Visit report ignores Repeat Issues, Medicine Management and Administration encounters to try and keep the information we have on the printout succinct and useful
  • It keeps our records accurate and clear and makes them medico-legally much more robust


Thursday, 17 January 2008


Well, thanks to INPS who have investigated our odd problem carefully and continue to do so. We have no clear explanation for it although 4 such errors were identified and all occurred in the same session, so something odd was going on. Third party applications maybe? Seems unlikely as nothing new or run that day, and only David Brown's filer writes directly via the API. Colin recalls that an error was noted that day that required a server re-boot.

Who knows??? Anyway, INPS are taking away a backup tape to look into it further. Certainly seems out of the ordinary and also appears that no significant harm or corruption of our stuff has occurred.


Thursday, 10 January 2008

It's a bit odd this

So, Monday was busier than it first appeared, but such is the way of General Practice. It's all that unpredicatability that we love it for .... :-(

Anyway, to the point. This:

why am I seeing a Drug name appearing in a Read Code box as this code?

Strange things are afoot?


Monday, 7 January 2008


Yep, Happy New Year folks. Bout time I got on with some work, really...

So, my laptop died over XMAS whilst trying to install a Hauppage TV USB Stick. The hard drive just went dead. :-( So, this means I have had to spend real money on a new laptop, which will be Vista not XP. And I understand it is possible to run V3 on Vista, but you have to do some footering with stuff to achieve this. We shall see.

Meanwhile, Contract Plus keeps chucking up reminders to me in a useful and usable fashion as we hit the last quarter of the QOF yr. Also chucked up a 'You need to PAY for this now' type of reminder which I shall delegate to my partner. Though I understand it is not hugely expensive.

Had a 'Vision cannot communicate with the appointments server' error on starting Con Man this morning, but easily fixed by restarting Vision.

Other than that - 3 house calls, 11 Rx requests and 11 pts to see. Actually not too bad considering the end of the Festive period. So far. It is very gloomy in January, opening the curtains to darkness, rain and wind. But hey, it's all about the attitude. My todo list is not getting any shorter though :-(

I use:

for a rolling to do list. I do not use Outlook, not really on any matter of principle - it is just not something I particularly like.