We run all our surgeries by an appointment only system. Appointments can be booked by telephoning the surgery on 01829 732401 and select option 1, on-line or you may call in to the surgery. You can view our surgery timetable for all our doctors availability. The reception office is open Monday to Friday 8.00 am to 6.30 pm. Please try to ring between 8.00-9.00 am if you require an appointment on the same day. If your problem is not urgent and you require a routine appointment we ask if possible that you ring between 1.00-3.00 pm when the phone lines are quieter. We try to make sure you see the doctor of your choice but if they are not available we may ask you to see another doctor.
If your condition is urgent you will always be seen by a Doctor or the Nurse Practitioner on the same day. To enable us to do this it is important that you do not book an urgent appointment unnecessarily.
Routine GP appointments have a 15 minute allocation, which includes time for recording the consultation. Please help us to run on time wherever possible by booking one appointment for one person for one problem. If you need another member of your family to be seen, or have several non-urgent problems, please make separate appointments. Please read our information leaflet getting the most out of your consultation which is the British Medical Association’s (BMA) Doctor Patient Partnership advice on using this time effectively. Which? have also produced a guide on the 10 ways to get the best from your GP.
Staff manning our reception and telephone lines are fully trained to ensure that high levels of patient care are met. Why does the receptionist need to ask what’s wrong with me? Some of their responses to your requests may frustrate you but they are only trying to gain information to route your query correctly. This may be offering you an appointment with the appropriate person or asking our Nurse Practitioner or duty doctor to call you back. All our staff are duty bound to honour patient confidentiality. Please be patient and courteous to the receptionists who are often under considerable stress. The times it is most difficult to get through to the surgery are the times it is the busiest.
Our Advanced Nurse Practitioner is qualified to assess your condition, diagnose, prescribe medicine and refer you for further investigations. She can also advise you on other aspects of your care. Her role is similar to that currently provided by your GP. When contacting the surgery for an urgent appointment, you may be offered an appointment with our Advanced Nurse Practitioner, however, should you wish an appointment with your usual GP, this can be arranged, although it may not necessarily be the same day.
Please arrive promptly for your appointment. If you cannot keep your appointment please let us know as soon as possible so we may offer the appointment to another patient.
Home Visits – if you are too ill to come to the surgery and you require a home visit, please call the surgery before 10.00 am so that the Doctors are able to plan their visits. Please give a brief explanation to the receptionists about your illness. This will help the Doctors see the most urgent cases first. Home visits take up much more of a Doctor’s time than a consultation in the surgery, so if you are mobile please come in to the surgery to be seen. We would request if the patient and/or any resident of the property smokes, that they refrain from doing so for at least an hour before and during the visit. Our clinicians should only expect to work in a smoke free environment.
** Please note that when a patient is discharged from hospital the Doctor does not routinely make home visits. However, if you have problems or become unwell following discharge we advise that you seek medical attention straight away. Please ring the surgery for an appointment to see a Doctor or to request a home visit if you are unable to get to surgery because of your illness.
We use a patient “calling system” in the waiting room. The Doctors will “call” patients from their room using a screen in the waiting room. When the Doctor is ready to see their next patient the screen will beep and the name of the patient will appear, with the name of the Doctor they are seeing and the room number to which they are to go to.
Illnesses are not predictable and urgent calls can upset the best appointment system – please be patient.
All patients are entitled to have a chaperone present for any consultation, examination or procedure where they feel one is required. This chaperone may be a family member of friend. On occasions you may prefer a formal chaperone to be present i.e a trained member of staff. Please let our receptionists know if you would like a chaperone.
Dental problems – If you have toothache or a dental problem, please contact your Dentist. GP’s have no extra training or expertise in dentistry. Your Dentist has the same obligations as we do for seeing their patients as an emergency or out of hours and should provide you with contact details.
You can now ask for a telephone consultation with a Doctor. If this would be more convenient for you please contact reception to arrange this.
Missed appointments or “did not attend” (DNA) appointments are those appointments that have been “wasted” as the patient did not attend and did not let the surgery know they would not be coming. This “wastage” is not just an extra cost to the NHS but also means someone who needed an appointment could have used it.
As a Practice we have traditionally had a low rate of DNAs but it is one that is increasing year on year. We would therefore ask if you know you are unable to attend your appointment for whatever reason you let us know as soon as possible so we can cancel your appointment and make it available for another patient. If you have made an appointment using our on-line service you can cancel and re-arrange appointments on-line too.
A day in the life of a GP
Read all about a day in the life of a GP.