eConsult Lite (eLite) for the Smart Inbox

How to use and access eConsult Lite

Laura Perring avatar
Written by Laura Perring
Updated over a week ago

This article covers:

What is eConsult Lite?

eConsult Lite is a short eConsult template that your Reception Team can use to record submissions from patients via the phone.

The eConsult Lite (eLite or e lite) will come directly into your Smart Inbox and can be triaged alongside all the other eConsults. This means that you can provide equal care to all your patients whether they contact the practice via your website or via your phone lines.

The eConsult Lite template is made up of eight questions including three free text questions to allow your reception team to collect and record key information in a short period of time.

We have included two flagging questions in the eConsult Lite template:

  1. We ask why the patient did not fill in an eConsult online; if they had been ‘kicked-out’ then we add a red flag to the consultation (so that you can triage this more urgently)

  2. At the end of the form, we ask the team member completing the eConsult Lite on behalf of the patient whether they think the case is urgent; if they answer yes we add another red flag

As such, the maximum number of red flags an eConsult Lite template can have is two red flag responses. In the Smart Inbox, using the sort function, users can bring those flagged eConsult Lites to the triager’s attention.

Please note auto-flagging and Urgent / Emergency Redirection is not available on this template so patients with urgent and emergency cases should be highlighted directly to your clinical team and escalated accordingly.

We have also added a box for the user submitting the eConsult to enter their name to help practices to streamline usage and support users.

The eConsult Lite submission will be received in your Smart Inbox as a Clinical eConsult. The summary card will look like the below:

How to get access to your unique eConsult Lite link

The eConsult Lite is easy to access directly from the Smart Inbox which redirects you to your unique URL. Reception can also bookmark the link too on their computers for easy access.

To access on the Smart Inbox press the + in the top right corner and select eConsult Lite to open the link in a new browser.

Do not share the unique link with anyone outside your practice to ensure you have full control of who can use this feature.


There are many benefits to utilising the eConsult lite template, please see below a few examples:

  • Streamlined approach to receiving patient requests

  • An approach to gathering additional information about the patients symptoms/condition

  • Comprehensive approach to information gathering & supporting your patients

  • Supporting clinicians and/or triage teams by gathering additional information about the patients symptoms/condition

  • Receive patient requests via the Smart Inbox (alongside other eConsult submissions)

  • Decreasing DNAs

  • Increase in remote closure rates

  • Ability to respond to patients via the Smart Inbox (multiple response options)

  • Data gathering for which member of the team has completed the Lite template on the patients behalf (This helps streamline usage and support those individuals if/when required)

Top tips

  • Ensure that your front desk team/admin team (the ones answering the calls) are aware of the eConsult lite template (including how to access it via the Smart Inbox / how to complete the template)

  • Educate the team on the benefits of utilising the template (from a practice perspective)

  • Ensure that the team are all ‘singing from the same hymn sheet’. It is really important that the team are all utilising available scripts/crib sheets to ask patients to comply by this new process for patient information to be gathered.

  • Utilise available resources i.e. scripts/crib sheets or if appropriate create your own scripts/crib sheets

  • Guarantee that the team are not wording the Lite template in a negative manner when/if patients ask for an alternative route e.g. if a patient calls the surgery, they ask for an appointment, do not say “we don’t have an appointment available, however, we do have the Lite template that we can complete for you”. Essentially, if patients are not receiving what they have asked for then it will be a negative to be offered another option.

  • If the team are receiving calls from patients, it is important to go straight into the questions and not provide another option. Informing patients that once this information has been gathered/completed then if an appointment is deemed as appropriate, it will be provided.

  • Inform patients of the benefits of providing this information to the team i.e. thank you for providing that information, this will now go through to a clinician for them to review OR thank you for providing that information, you will receive a response within the allocated response time

  • Make certain that you are utilising the time to educate the patient on the next steps, dependent on your practices processes. This will help to avoid any further call backs into the practice.

  • Market this new process to your patients so that they are aware that there aren’t alternative routes, this is how your practice works

  • Review eConsult marketing materials to see if any of the content can be used

  • Identify all the different ways that patients can be informed. Some examples include; your practice website, phone line, text message, social media platforms, newsletters, word of mouth, waiting room, leaflets)

  • Think about creating an announcement page on your website (this can be used for multiple areas, however, it could include an area on your process for information gathering via the Lite template)


Can eConsult Lite being accessed when my practice is closed?

eConsult Lite can still be used by the practice team when the practice has closed for the day, used the demand management feature or the practice has hit their cap.

Can I turned off eConsult Lite?

At present you are not able to switch off eConsult Lite, you may need to communicate with members at your practice if it is being overused.

If you have any questions or you feel that this article could be improved, please feel free to give us some feedback by emailing us, pressing the emojis below or using the chat button on the bottom right-hand side of this page to speak to one of the eConsult team.

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