Boots UK and digital healthcare provider LIVI have formed a new long-term partnership designed to offer people an extra means of accessing expert health advice.

The companies are working together "through approved and regulated routes" to trial how patients could remotely access a Boots pharmacist via the LIVI app, to get general health advice and to have a remote conversation about their prescription medications.

This service, they note, has the potential to help reduce pressure on the NHS, “helping customers maintain simple and safe access to healthcare whilst at home”.

The partnership will also see a future expansion of the successful in-store pilot to several new Boots UK stores – the majority of which will deliver NHS commissioned services – in high street locations throughout the country.

These stores will offer the LIVI video GP service via a tablet in-store, as well as a range of diagnostic tools, such as blood pressure monitoring. With agreement from the NHS, these services will be added to throughout 2020, the groups noted.

“With millions of patients self-isolating at home – particularly the elderly or those with underlying health conditions – access to expert health advice without having travel to a pharmacy or GP surgery is even more crucial,” noted Richard Bradley, director of Pharmacy for Boots UK.

LIVI launches remote COVID-19 detection guidelines

Meanwhile, LIVI announced that it is launching the first ever UK national guidelines to NHS GPs, to provide training and treatment on how they can spot and manage COVID-19 symptoms in their patients over phone or video.

These directions, which were produced in the absence of national guidelines for COVID-19 and digital healthcare in the UK, have been produced by LIVI’s clinical team of NHS Doctors.

They will help to ensure that all doctors in the UK can spot early signs of COVID-19 and help them to better understand the pandemic and how it develops.

"The Clinical Leadership team at LIVI have developed these guidelines for video, digital and telephone consultations relating to COVID-19, to ensure that those undertaking video and phone consultations for the first time and NHS GPs have clear and up to date directions relating to digital consultations,” said Harriet Bradley, medical director at LIVI UK.