Appointment screening SMS notification
By Inhealthcare
Case Studies 25 March 2020

City Health Care Partnership CIC partners with Inhealthcare to deliver an appointment screening tool for the daily screening of thousands of citizens for signs of coronavirus before their routine outpatient appointments



  • Every weekday, City Health Care Partnership CIC (CHCP) receives around 1,000 citizens at its clinics and typically arranges another 1,000 nurse visits in community settings. The onset of coronavirus means these citizens must be screened before they have any contact with healthcare professionals.
  • CHCP did not have the capacity to do this manually so turned to Inhealthcare to develop a digital alternative.


  • Inhealthcare has developed an automated symptom checker for the daily screening of thousands of people for signs of coronavirus before their routine outpatient appointments.
  • Inhealthcare’s technology connects with the citizen on the morning of the appointment via automated telephone calls or SMS and relays a request to complete a symptom questionnaire.
  • The citizen’s response to the questionnaire is analysed and any warning signs are flagged up for CHCP, allowing healthcare professionals to prepare accordingly or provide the citizens with guidance.
  • The patient record is updated automatically through Inhealthcare’s integration with all major NHS systems.
  • If any citizen does not respond to the request, they are sent reminders and alerts are raised for any citizen not responding.
  • Community nursing teams will soon have access to the citizen’s responses through the Inhealthcare professional smartphone app, providing them with the latest information out in the field and enhancing the information already available through the clinical record.


  • The service saved NHS staff from making more than 350,000 phone calls between late March and November.
  • A review found the service successfully identified patients who were potentially at risk and enabled staff to take further action.
  • It also found the service reassured patients they were being looked after and helped nurses to take precautions such as donning personal protective equipment.

CHCP said patient feedback is “extremely positive”. Examples from the review include: “I feel that I am being protected from the impact of the pandemic. Doing this protects us and the nurses coming to see us. It helps prevent further spread of the virus. I am grateful that people are checking on us before my nurse comes to visit me.”

The symptom checker service has been invaluable during the pandemic. It has reduced anxiety among patients and professionals, cut the number of missed appointments and enabled our frontline staff to prepare for meeting patients in person.

The balance between automation and individual input has reduced the demand on nursing staff and provided us with real-time information to help manage the health and wellbeing of our patients.

Mike Cosgrove, project manager at CHCP
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