First Look: Livi app review
With over 2,000,000 consultations and an average rating of 4.9 stars on the App Store, Livi lets patients see a GP by video. But is this health app all it’s cracked up to be? We took a first look to find out.
What is Livi?
Founded in 2015, Livi’s goal is to offer great healthcare for everyone, one patient at a time.
Livi is an app that allows you to chat with a registered GP from the comfort of your own home. It can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play, and used on either a mobile phone or tablet.
How does Livi work?
Livi works just like a regular GP appointment, but everything is done remotely through a video call.
To start using Livi, you’ll need to download the app, register your details and then simply book an appointment for a time convenient to you.
The good news is that you may be eligible for Livi’s free NHS service if your GP practice is a registered partner. If not, you can just as easily use Livi’s pay-as-you-go-service, although appointments cost £29.Download Livi now
Who’s Livi for?
Livi is currently suitable for adults over the age of 16, and is ideal for those who would prefer to see a GP from the comfort of their own home, rather than going to their GP surgery.
The app caters to patients needing consultations quickly, as well as those looking for more flexible appointment times. Choose to see the next available doctor – Livi claims that this is usually within a matter of minutes – or book a time within the next seven days that suits you.
Particularly useful for those who struggle to travel to their local doctor’s surgery, and for high-risk patients who may feel more comfortable with a video call during the COVID-19 pandemic, Livi is an attractive alternative to regular doctors’ appointments – yet it still offers the same service as you’d expect from a GP practice.
What do Mumsnet users think about Livi?
We work hard to provide advice that you can trust, which is why we put the Livi app through its paces with six Mumsnetters of varying ages, focusing on ease of registering, how they found the appointment and their overall experience. Here’s what they thought.
Rachel, 38, South East
“Wow. This service has changed the way I'll be visiting my GP in the future. The app was easy to download, and quick to fill in the registration details, including a selfie for security.
A really simple process to arrange an appointment with a GP. Once booked, you need to ensure that you have the notifications on to remind you to be ready for your appointment.
The GP was really easy to chat to, listened to my concerns and offered advice. I had a prescription sent to my local pharmacy that was ready to collect within four hours. Such an efficient service to use – works around your daily life!”
Ashley, 40, East Midlands
“I managed to have my appointment on Saturday. It was pretty easy to download the app and registration was straightforward.
I didn’t realise at first that there were two different options for booking. Either the next available appointment or for a set date. The first two times I tried to book I got an error message, but then the third time it put me in a queue for an appointment.
It was a Saturday afternoon and my wait was around 40 minutes. The appointment was great. The doctor was lovely, friendly and helpful. I would use the service again.”
Ayshea, 34, West Midlands
“Getting started on the Livi app was fairly straightforward. You have a profile where you enter your details.
Booking an appointment is easy as you choose a time from the options available. From 8am to 10pm is a fantastic time range and suitable for everyone!
I love the ease of which you can talk to the doctor and I felt very comfortable through the whole thing. The doctor provided good advice and suggested a treatment plan over the next few weeks.
I was unable to request a [specific] pharmacy [for my prescription] which was unfortunate. But, overall, I liked that there was no paperwork to worry about. I would use this service again if I was unable to book into my regular GP practice.”
Victoria, 26, East Midlands
“I found the app registration process really simple. They didn’t ask for anything too difficult and all of the questions I could answer easily.
The overall appointment was fine. I was able to speak to a registered GP and ask questions regarding my [mental health] and it was as good as seeing a GP face-to-face.
The GP really listened to my problems and understood how best to sort them out. There was a 10-minute delay, but I did spend 15 to 20 minutes on the video appointment which is more than I usually get at my own GP practice.
With regards to the current situation, I would probably use this service again, as it’s the safest way to have an appointment and it does free up vital GP space at your own practice. However, it does obviously depend on the issue you have as some things can’t be done over a video appointment.”
Jacqueline, 64, London
“The Livi app was downloaded with no problems and registering was very easy. I chose an evening appointment for the following day.
The GP was with me within five minutes. He diagnosed my itchy eyes as eczema on my eyelids and explained how he had come to this conclusion, and I was told that he would prescribe two different types of medication.
The appointment was unrushed and felt very similar to a face-to-face appointment. Would I use this service again? I was not impressed by my prescription being sent to a different pharmacy to the one I had requested. However, the app is good and the appointment with the GP was very efficient and time-saving.”
Gemma, 36, Yorkshire and the Humber
“The GP called me within 30 minutes of initial booking and I found the appointment to be no different to a usual face-to-face medical appointment.
I had uploaded a few photos for the doctor to look at and they were able to give a detailed explanation of probable cause and prescribe some medication.
I was given clear and thorough advice on how the prescription would be provided, what medication I was being given, how to use it and what to do if I had any issues or needed to follow up after treatment. My prescription was sent electronically directly to my local pharmacy and was ready to be collected just a few hours after my appointment.
Overall, I was extremely impressed with the service and would definitely use it again. The only small issue I had was that I wasn't able to select a set time for the appointment. It wasn't a problem as it was my day off, but it could have been if I was at work.”
Livi’s standout features
- GP appointments from the comfort of your own home
- Ability to see a GP seven days a week
- Free NHS service in eligible areas
- Prescriptions delivered to a pharmacy near you
- Option to attach photos to help the doctor with their diagnosis
- Easy appointment cancellation through the app
Verdict (for now)
While wait times seem to vary and prescriptions sometimes can't be delivered to the pharmacy of the patient's choice, Mumsnetters in general offer positive reviews of their experiences with Livi.
It’s a little different to what most will be used to and will require access to a mobile phone or tablet, but the app offers a flexibility not always possible at regular GP practices – and wait times that, in the end, are much shorter.
Coupled with the current pandemic, this service could well be worth its weight in gold, particularly to those of us who are most vulnerable. We think it’s at least worth a try.
Want to give Livi a go?
Get medical advice, referrals and prescriptions from GMC-registered GPs at home or on the go within minutes by registering with Livi.
And you can use the promo code LIVIM5 to get £5 off your next pay-as-you-go GP appointment – usually £29.*
*Valid until 31 March 2021, and is exclusively for Mumsnet users.Sign up to Livi now
What is a First Look?
First Look pages are sponsored content. They provide an early glimpse of new products and services, showcasing releases from both exciting new startups and well-loved brands.
We give all new products a thorough once-over, checking that the features are as good as they say and that the product or service functions as it's supposed to.
This isn't an exhaustive test of the app or how well it performs. Rather, our First Look features are informed previews, providing a basic overview and getting a feel for the service’s most exciting aspects.Read next: Coronavirus and pregnancy