This is the final week for the NLH Q&A service. I’ve been overwhelmed by the response from GPs and apparently there has been a lot of chatter on GP mail-lists moaning about the decision to close the service. So much so it came to the attention of a health journalist and I had a chat with them earlier this week. You can read the story here. I don’t think my opinions were fully represented, but then that’s the nature of journalism. Interestingly, the same GP chatter stimulated a call from BMJ-land.

I have mixed feelings about the end of the NLH Q&A Service.

On one hand I’m sad for:

  • The users of the service. I have been so humbled by the feedback I’ve received, it really has been great. I think it’s a missed opportunity to not – somehow – keep the service running.
  • Rosalind. She has worked on the Q&A service from near the start and has been wonderful. She made a load of brave decisions to come and work with me on Q&A. I’d like to think she’s learnt a lot from the experience. Fortunately, she’s got a new job but it will necessitate a move from Aberystwyth to London. I suppose I’m sad that I’ll not be working with her for the foreseeable future.

On the other hand I’m getting so excited by the new Q&A development (TRIPanswers) which will launch in the summer. I’ve had the website to play with for a few weeks now and have been testing it fairly extensively. I’ve just sent another batch of feedback to our web-developers, so I’m hoping the work will be as good as completed by the first week of July. However, the launch won’t happen then as I need to populate the site with data – which is a long, hard, manual task.

I’ve also been making new relationships with various Q&A providers around the globe and that will all help support TRIPanswers. I genuinely think TRIPanswers will be bigger than the TRIP Database…