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Many problems in general practice can be dealt with by the doctor on the telephone; however, the 'telephone first' approach does not suit all patients and is not a panacea for meeting demands for care.

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Jennifer Newbould 1,*, Sarah Ball 1, Gary Abel 2, Matthew Barclay 3, Tray Brown 3, Jennie Corbett 1, Brett Doble 3, Marc Elliott 4, Josephine Exley 1, Anna Knack 5, Adam Martin 1, Emma Pitchforth 1, Catherine Saunders 3, Edward CF Wilson 3, Eleanor Winpenny 1, Miaoqing Yang 1, Martin Roland 3

1 Cambridge Centre for Health Services Research, RAND Europe, Cambridge, UK
2 University of Exeter Medical School, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK
3 Cambridge Centre for Health Services Research, Department of Public Health and Primary Care, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
4 RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA, USA
5 RAND Europe, Cambridge, UK
* Corresponding author Email:

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