Interested in remote working in General Practice in North Cumbria?

Our remote workforce bank offers a range of telephone, video or online consultation shifts for a variety of NHS General Practices across North Cumbria.

The service is supported by the NHS North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board and is hosted locally by Carlisle Healthcare Primary Care Network.

We would love to hear from you - either as a practice looking to adopt online consultations, or as a practitioner looking to work flexibly and remotely to support North Cumbria practices:

“Flexible remote working is a necessary change in the way healthcare is provided. It allows for the leveraging of technology to answer some of the difficult logistical issues of provision of care across a region which can be left sparsely covered at times. 

Personally I’ve experienced that it allows for a better work life balance given the freedom you have of when/where you do your shifts. Equally cover can be provided to surgeries which may vitally need it thus serving the patients. It works out well for patients and works out well for clinicians and that’s the best way to sustainably improve health outcomes.”

Dr T.M - GP

What we do

Carlisle Healthcare (on behalf of NHS North Cumbria Primary Care Networks) will identify, on-board and mobilise a GP/practitioner workforce to build clinical capacity and support existing GP practices that have current workforce challenges.


Evidence and local experience show that 25-30% of GP access activity (appointments) can be managed remotely via asynchronous online consultations. 

Supporting remote working, whilst also identifying clinicians who want to work flexibly and remotely can reduce the daily burden of demand on general practices - releasing GP capacity on site, creating additional capacity for patient access, improving the working day and building resilience.


In order to harness the benefit of a remote workforce, general practices need to optimise their use of online consultations.

Carlisle Healthcare (on behalf of North Cumbria Primary Care Networks and Practices) will:

• Identify local GPs who want to work flexibly and create a workforce bank

• Assure compliance checks for each member of the workforce bank

• Procure and use rota software to advertise available clinical shifts to the bank

• Facilitate secure remote IT access for the clinical bank staff

• Establish a local clinically led network to provide clinical updates, provide clinical feedback and support the clinical quality development and performance of the bank staff

• Establish a network to capture patient and user experience within a culture of continuous improvement

• Enable access to remote voice recording

• Support a WhatsApp group for peer-peer support

Participating practices will:

• On board locums GPs onto their EMIS clinical system and update Smartcard access roles

• Develop and provide and operating procedure for online consultations and make a locus pack available 
to practitioners

• Create an eConsult Admin (or similar) task group on EMIS to act as an in-box for requests from remote 
digital locums

Participating practitioners will provide the following information prior to gaining access to the rota software:

• Name, E-mail address, Phone number, Postal address
• GMC number, NHS smart card number, Photo ID
• Evidence of DBS check & medical indemnity cover
• Hepatitis B status, Evidence of performers list status
• Evidence of up to date mandatory training (Safeguarding adults & children Level 3, Information 
governance, BLS and anaphylaxis)

We also need to know if the locum GP has access to a North Cumbria NHS laptop, or whether they will need to alternatively use a secure virtual desktop to access clinical systems.

Once onboarded, the locum GP will be given access to rotamaster to access and book into available shifts. Shifts can include remote telephone triage, on-site telephone triage, remote on-line consultations and a variety of other clinical sessions as requested by participating practices.

Practices use a variety of online consultation tools including EMIS, eConsult and AccuRx. This is made clear on rotamaster.

Session content is standardised across participating practices. A 4 hour clinical telephone triage session includes 18 clinical contacts and a 4 hour online consultation session consists of 24 online consultations.

Fees are also standardised and are currently £75 per hour. Locums will invoice practices for work done in their usual way.