Mallaig patients to receive ‘Near Me’ online appointment service


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The expansion of NHS Highland ‘Near Me’ facilities continues in Lochaber as the latest clinic was recently installed in the Mackintosh Centre, Mallaig.

Located in a room at the Care Home Centre on Annie’s Brae, the device will allow people in the Mallaig area to attend out-patient appointments using the online video platform – eliminating the need to travel to see a consultant. The service is similar to one already available at the Small Isles Medical Practice on Eigg.

Twenty-four departments within NHS Highland now offer appointments via NHS Near Me.

While the home option will be the preferred one for patients, the unstaffed Mallaig and Eigg units are part of a back-up system in case people cannot connect from their homes.

NHS Highland’s NHS Near Me lead, Clare Morrison, said: ‘The opening of the NHS Near Me room in Mallaig marks the near completion of the installation phase of NHS Near Me Clinic units across Highland.

‘Our experience of using NHS Near Me in Caithness, and an earlier project using video consulting technology at home, showed that not everyone has a smartphone, computer or good internet connection. That’s why we have installed these unstaffed rooms: so everyone can access the NHS Near Me service.’

Ms Morrison said the dedicated NHS Near Me service is easy to use and has clear instructions to follow.

The NHS Highland board ultimately plans that most Highland patients will be able to use NHS Near Me from their homes using video calling devices such as a smartphone, tablet or computer.