• Access to diagnostics in primary care and the impact on a primary care led health service.

      O'Riordan, M; Doran, G; Collins, C (Irish Medical Journal, 2015-02)
      We undertook a postal survey of GPs to establish their current access to radiological and endoscopic tests. More than one fifth of GPs do not have direct access to abdominal (n = 42, 21.4%) or pelvic (n = 49, 24.6%) ultrasound in the public system. Where access is available public patients have an average 14 week waiting period. In stark contrast in the private system virtually all GPs have direct access (n = 159, 99.2% and n = 156, 98.8% respectively for abdominal and pelvic ultrasound) with an average wait of just over four days. Direct access to CT scan in the public system is available to the minority of GPs, e.g. n = 31, 18.4% for chest scan, in the public system; even where available, there is an average 12 week wait for this. In comparison 151 (88.6%) GPs have access to CT chest scanning in the private sector with an average waiting time of 5.4 working days. Such limited access to diagnostics impacts on the delivery of a quality service.
    • Health system changes needed to support people consulting general practice out of hours services in Ireland.

      Collins, C; O'Shea, M T; Cunniffe, J; Finegan, P; Irish College of General Practitioners (International Journal of Mental Health Systems, 2018-01-01)
      Mental illness acts as a barrier to accessing and obtaining effective medical care. It has been shown that out of hours services are an important first stop for emergency care for people experiencing mental health difficulties. However, little is in fact known about the use of out of hours general practice services by people experiencing mental health difficulties. To establish the number and range of consultations that have a primary or related mental health issue attending general practitioner (GP) out of hours and to document adherence to their follow-up care referral. Descriptive study in one large out of hours primary care service in the South East of Ireland (Caredoc). An anonymous extraction of retrospective data from 1 year of the out of hours' electronic database was undertaken. Patients who attended the out of hours with a possible mental health issue and were referred to the psychiatric services or back to their own GP, were tracked via phone follow-up with hospitals and GPs over 6 months to establish if they attended for the recommend follow-up care.
    • A picture of general practice research in Ireland 2012-2013 Through research and audit activity

      Collins, C; ICGP Research Department (Irish College of General Practitioners (ICGP), 2014)