Check a symptom
Here you will find information about the 'Check a symptom' feature. If you think we've missed anything please get in touch by emailing email@example.com
Q. What is Check a symptom?
A. Check is a feature in the babylon app that allows you to enter your medical symptoms and get advice on what service would best help.
Q. Is Check a symptom run by doctors?
A. A team of doctors designed the system, but the feature itself is fully automated.
Q. What hours is Check a symptom available?
A. Check is available via the babylon app 24/7.
Q. Is Check a symptom regulated?
A. Check provides advice based on standard practice and the average person, and does not take into account your specific past medical history. Therefore, like other symptom checkers, it is not classed as a medical device and does not require registration with an official body. In terms of in-house regulation, Check outcomes, usage data and feedback are audited regularly by our medical team to ensure optimum satisfaction to our users, and to see how we can improve our content.
Q. How do I know it's accurate?
A. Check has been designed by doctors, and has undergone a thorough review process by clinicians and healthcare providers from multiple specialities including primary care, emergency medicine and pharmacy.
This review process has involved inputting a full series of medical conditions through the Check feature to verify that they are directed to the appropriate source of medical help.
Further scientific testing has also confirmed that Check gives more accurate advice than a number of other symptom checkers available. Check content is continuously being curated and updated in response to ongoing internal testing and user/GP feedback.
Q. I can't find my symptoms in Check, what should I do?
A. We are always working to expand the range of medical conditions we cover. If you are happy to share the details with us, please email our support staff your medical symptoms at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will use the feedback to improve our service.
Q. Check a symptom isn't working, what should I do?
A. We occasionally turn the software off when we update symptoms. Please try again later today. In the meantime, the Ask a Question and Book a consultation services are available.
Q. How do I use Check a symptom?
A. Select the body part corresponding to the symptom(s) you are worried about. Check will then ask you a number of multiple choice questions. Select the answers that apply to you to receive advice on the best course of action for you. The whole process should not take more than a couple of minutes. The advice provided is intended for immediate action, so if you wait before doing anything; check again, as the outcome might have changed.
If you are advised to use a health service "as soon as possible", this is intended to mean within the next few days.
If you are advised to use a health service "within 2 weeks", this does not indicate that you should wait 2 weeks before using that service. You should see someone at the earliest convenient time within this time frame.
Q. Does Check a symptom work for children?
A. Check cannot be used by children under 16 years of age. We are working on expanding our content to include children's health. In the meantime, the Ask a Question and Consultation services are also both available.
Q. What does Check a symptom cover?
A. Check can be used by adults over 16 years of age, for physical symptoms. It does not cover children's conditions, mental health conditions, or non-emergency conditions that may affect pregnant women. It is also not advisable for people with severe chronic health conditions, or who have recently had surgery.
Q. Do I have access to a GP after using Check a symptom?
A. If Check advises you to see a doctor, or if you remain concerned and would like a medical review, you can book in to see one of our GPs or consult your NHS physician. babylon subscribers can access unlimited GP appointments, and pay-as-you-go members can book a babylon GP consultation for £25.
Q. How much does it cost?
A. Check a symptom is completely free to use.
Q. Why did you send me to A&E?
A. You were sent to the Emergency Department because you selected an answer that indicated a possible life or limb-threatening condition. In some cases, you may have actually had a less serious condition, but the particular symptoms you selected indicated a need for urgent in-person assessment and, potentially, hospital investigations.
Q. Why did you send me to the pharmacy?
A. You were sent to the pharmacy because your symptoms did not indicate a serious condition requiring prescription medication or assessment by a physician. Pharmacists are able to provide short courses of strong medications or specialist treatments such as ointments or first aid supplies, and on this occasion it was felt these would be more appropriate for your condition.
Q. Why did you send me to a GP?
A. You were sent to a GP because you selected symptoms that were potentially medically serious and requiring a prescription, such as antibiotics, or investigations such as blood tests or imaging. In some cases, it may be that your condition is less serious, but with these particular symptoms, this decision should be made by a clinician.
Q. Does Check a symptom diagnose?
A. Check is a system to assist you in deciding where to get the most appropriate care based on the symptoms you enter, but it cannot provide a specific diagnosis - this usually requires full assessment by a doctor. Instead, Check obtains an impression of a patient's symptoms and guides them to the most appropriate source of help, such as a hospital or GP, or reassures them that they can stay at home and take simple measures to get better. If a diagnosis is mentioned in advice about simple measures, this is because it is a common cause of a symptom among the general population. It should not be taken as a diagnosis of your particular condition.
Q. What is the clinical governance around Check a symptom?
A. Check outcomes, usage data and feedback are audited regularly by our in-house medical team to ensure that we are satisfying our users, providing a safe and useful service, and to see how we can improve our content.