We would like to make you aware that we are frequently reviewing our appointment system to reflect our patients’ needs and frequent changes made accordingly. As a result of this we now have early, late, advance book and book on the day appointments. We take into considerations the following:
- Changes in number of positive COVID-19 cases in the region
- High demands from patients with long term illnesses
- Number of Frequent attenders booking unnecessary appointments with clinicians.
- Increasing requests for doctor appointments for self-limiting conditions, which can be self-managed at home.
Due to this, we might signpost you to NHS websites for self-care advice, pharmacists or NHS 111. We might also advise you to ring alternative number to book at a nearby Urgent care centre when all our appointments have been booked for the day.
Our current system is as follows:-
- Advance booking of appointments
You are able to book appointments up to 4 weeks in advance to see a Doctor or a Nurse. These appointments can be booked by attending in person, online or by telephone.
Our usual appointment is 10 minutes long.
- Advance booking by internet
These can be booked by logging onto online services (NHS App, MyGP app..etc.). You will need to register to access this service. Please ask reception staff for more details.
- Book for the next day appointments
There are doctor’s appointments made available each day which are only available to book online the night before. These appointments will be released at 6.30 pm each day for the next day appointments.
- Emergency appointments
We endeavour to see all the patients presenting with an urgent medical problem. However, please call the surgery if you feel you need to be seen urgently and a Doctor will assess your case in order to provide the most appropriate cause of action. This may include requesting that you visit the surgery, providing you with a prescription or suggesting a more appropriate pathway of care (i.e. A&E). Please bear in mind that we have limited number of emergency appointments to offer each day.
Please be aware that the Surgery time is limited, as the doctors have to do home visits, prescriptions, referrals and reports after surgery has finished.
In a number of cases, it might be worth considering an appointment with a practice nurse rather than a doctor. Practice nurses are qualified to deal with many ailments and you may be seen more quickly.
It is advisable that a responsible adult should accompany children under the age of 16.
Please bear in mind that an appointment is for one person only – if, for example, you need to be seen as well as your child then you will need two separate appointments.
We are also want you to be aware that sometimes Doctors and the nurse might be running late due to emergencies. So please bear with us.
If you cannot attend an appointment for any reason then we please ask that you inform us as soon as possible in order for us to provide your appointment slot to another patient.
You can book a face to face appointment in advance with a doctor or nurse by telephone or by calling into the surgery. We always try to offer you an appointment on the day you want it but this may not always be possible. You can also book an appointment on internet. Remember you need to have registered to use this service – please ask at Reception
If your problem is urgent, you will be seen on the same day, usually by the doctor on-duty at the end of his/her surgery.
Patients who wish to be seen on the same day may be triaged by a Doctor. This means that the receptionist will take your details and a Doctor will telephone you back. During this telephone call, the Doctor will assess your needs and, if required, agree a mutually convenient time for you to attend at the surgery
PLEASE REMEMBER that our doctors are very busy and only have a 10 minute slot per problem per appointment. Please book a double appointment if you wish to discuss an additional problem.
Only very urgent calls will be put through to the doctor during surgery hours. Please be prepared to give our receptionist as much details of the problem as possible. Our reception staff are trained and has been signposted on how to act on urgent the situations.
Preference of Practitioner
All patients are registered with the practice and not with a specific doctor but patients may express a preference to see a particular doctor when making appointments. In the event that your preferred doctor is unavailable, the practice will offer you another doctor. If you insist upon waiting to see a specific doctor, then this will depend upon that doctor’s availability and may result in you having to wait longer than the 48 hours anticipated in the NHS Plan.
If you are late
Appointments will be held for you for up to 5 mins after the time given to you. If you arrive more than 5 mins late, you will be asked to make another appointment. Please do not be offended by this; the reason that we do this is so that other patients are not kept waiting if you are late.
If you need to cancel an appointment, please inform us as soon as you know that you will not be keeping it so that your appointment can be given to another patient and will not be wasted. We have many wasted appointments each day because patients do not turn up and they do not let us know in advance so that the appointment can be given to another patient.
We also have a text message reminder service. Please ensure we have an up to date mobile numner for you and your family members. You are also able to cancel your appointment via the text message service.
If you miss three appointments without cancelling them – this may lead to removal from the surgery
If you require a home visit please call before 11.00 am
We encourage all our patients to come up to the surgery for a full and proper assessment, however there will be those very elderly and house bound patients who are unable to come up and it is these patients who we are happy to visit at home.
Please note that the doctor can see 5 patients in the surgery in the time it takes to do one home visit.
You do not require a doctor’s sickness certificate for any illness lasting seven days or less. Your employer may however require you to complete a self-certification form (SC2) which is available from your employer or on the HMRC website.
Evidence that you are sick
If you are sick for more than seven days, your employer can ask you to provide medical evidence to support sick leave or payment of SSP (statutory sick pay). Your GP will issue a sick note / medical certificate if you have seen him for the illness or he has evidence that you had seen an other doctor (in the practice, urgent care centre hospital or elsewhere) for this.
It is up to your employer to decide whether you are incapable of work. A medical certificate, now called a ‘Statement of Fitness for Work’ (see below) from your doctor is strong evidence that you are sick and would normally be accepted, unless there is evidence to prove otherwise.
You could also provide evidence from someone else e.g. dentist or hospital doctor who has treated you. If your employer has any doubts, they may still ask for a medical certificate from your GP.
Statement of Fitness for Work – ’Fit Note’
The ‘fit note’ was introduced on 6 April 2010. With your employer’s support, the note will help you return to work sooner by providing more information about the effects of your illness or injury.
For more information see the DirectGov website (where this information was sourced).