Immediate Access Questions
Will it be possible to pre-book to see a particular doctor with the receptionist?
No. When you speak to the receptionists, they will take a telephone number that the doctor can phone you back on. A doctor will phone as soon as one is free. The doctor will discuss your problem with you and what the best way to deal with it is. It may be that both you and the doctor are happy with the doctor giving you advice over the phone, or that a face to face appointment is necessary to deal with your problem. If it is, a time that suits you and the doctor will be arranged by the doctor.
Why is the practice doing this?
We have found that if we speak to you on the phone first we can deal with your problem more quickly. We can often avoid the inconvenience for you of having to come to the practice, or save multiple visits by arranging tests if required before you see the doctor. It also allows us to be more flexible with times for face to face consultations and to allow an appropriate amount of time for them.
Do I need to call at a particular time?
No. It is possible to call at any time of the day and a doctor will be available at all times. We would ask however that where possible you do not wait until shortly before the surgery closes to call.
What if I miss the doctor’s call?
If the doctor calls you back and you are not available a message will be left on your phone at the number you gave. When you phone back, should you still want to speak to the doctor, you will be added to the patient call list and phoned as soon as it is convenient.
What if I need a prescription which is not on repeat or I would like a doctor to visit?
You will be added to the patient call list and the doctor will contact you quickly to discuss your request.
Sometimes I have turned up at reception because I was passing by and the doctor was willing to see me as it was quiet. Will this be possible?
We would always ask you to phone first as we have no way of knowing how busy things will be. If circumstances are such that arriving at reception is the only possible way of contacting us then you will be asked to wait until a doctor is available.
Why can’t we use e-mail or Skype?
We are looking at both these options but there are some confidentiality issues which have still to be resolved. You can already request repeat prescriptions through our website and we are looking at ways in which we can provide other online services to you.
I am hard of hearing and don’t like using the phone.
Please let the receptionist know of your hearing problem so the doctor can take this into account when agreeing with you how to deal with your problem.
I would like to see or speak to a certain doctor as they know my case best and I normally see them. Will this be possible?
In an ideal world any patient would be able to see the doctor of their choice at the time of their choosing. We will try to match the doctor who is most familiar with you as often as possible and in circumstances where that is particularly important, but we would still ask you to phone and accept that the doctor who initially phones you back may not be the doctor of first choice.