Video consultation in general practice – a prospective cohort study with a special focus on patients with mental disorders- and problems

Project: PhD Project

Project Details


This PhD project investigates video consultations in general practice with a special focus on patients with mental health problems and/or illnesses. The purpose of this project is to investigate possible inequalities in the use of video consultations in general practice. Through an explorative register study, the quality of video consultations is investigated (measured by prescribing- and hospital patterns) as well as possible differences in characteristics of patients receiving talking therapy via video consultation or face-to-face consultation in general practice.

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, VC was implemented at an unprecedented pace across many general practices in developed countries, to provide clinicians with an alternative to physical consultations while avoiding the risk of infection spread. After the March 2020 lockdown in Denmark, the number of VCs dropped compared to during lockdown. However, the number of video consultations is in October 2021 still at a higher level compared to before lockdown. The General Practitioners Organisation and the danish regions have an ambition to strengthen the implementation of video consultations in the future but, concerns have been expressed among some clinicians that VC might be ineffective and influence social interactions, meaning making processes and diagnostic processes in a negative way.

The overall aim of this project is to investigate the quality, satisfaction level and patient characteristics among user of VC consultations in general practice.
To investigate the overall aim of this study two sub studies are developed and these are a register-based sub study and a questionnaire sub study.
The aim of the questionnaire sub study is to investigate the experienced satisfaction level among users (patients) of video consultations in general practice.
The register-based study will investigate the quality (prescribing and referral pattern) and differences in patient characteristics among patients who receive video talking therapy consultation compared to patients receiving physical talking therapy consultation. These results will be used to identify potential health inequalities in the use of video consultations in general practice.

The questionnaire for the questionnaire study will be developed as part of this PhD study. The questionnaire will be based on existing validated questionnaires and qualitative interviews with users of VC. The questionnaire survey measures patient experiences with video consultation including suitability, satisfaction and patient experienced relational empathy during video consultations in general practice. The questionnaire will be distributed to respondents in collaboration with “Min Læge App”.
The register-based sub study is an explorative sub study that includes all patients who have received talking therapy in general practice from 2017 to 2021. The dataset consists of health information, information on socioeconomic status and information on prescribing and referral patterns.

Relevance for practice:
This PhD project generates knowledge about the advantages and disadvantages of the use of VC and whether some patients are more satisfied with the use of VC compared to other patients (reason for contact etc.). These results can contribute with knowledge to identify if possible, inequalities exists in the use of VC in general practice. Ultimately, this project can contribute with evidence-informed decision making- and implementation processes for using video consultations in general practice.
Effective start/end date01/09/202101/09/2024


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