Need to speak to a doctor about a test result, a recent clinic appointment, a follow up discussion regarding a recent change in medication, a simple medication review, or to request a repeat medical fitness certificate? Book a telephone appointment!
If you have a medical problem that may need an examination, (any kind of rash, lump or bump), a telephone appointment is not suitable for you. Instead, please continue to use our normal appointment system, by booking online or ringing our reception team. For more urgent concerns, our same day appointment system will also continue unchanged.
Evidence shows that patients perceive telephone appointments to be more convenient and quicker. Telephone appointments are useful for patients who live far from the surgery, or have no means of transport, or with a physical or psychological disability that makes trips to the surgery difficult, or for those in work or their dependants.
“How shall I prepare for my telephone consultation?”
The appointment is for ten minutes. You will be given a time when the doctor will call you. Make sure we have the correct telephone number to contact you. Please make sure your phone is on and that the voicemail is off at this time. (Please note: the doctor will ring you as close as possible to your appointment time, but may ring slightly before or after this time as delays are inevitable in healthcare. It would be reasonable to expect the doctor to ring within 30 mins of your appointment time.) Keep any relevant documentation or medication nearby in case you need to refer to it, and have a pen and paper ready in case you need to jot down any notes.
“Isn’t this just a way of putting me off seeing the Doctor?”
No, telephone appointments are often a way of getting through to a doctor more quickly and conveniently than if you waited for a face to face appointment.
“Isn’t this a way of stopping me getting a face to face appointment?”
Again – this isn’t the case. Many things can be arranged, discussed, or provided, without you needing to see the GP, and often more quickly than if you had to wait for a face to face appointment. It’s possible the doctor may feel that you need a face to face appointment after all, in which case one can be arranged at an appropriate time, often soon after your telephone appointment.
“If the doctor asks me to come in anyway, why can’t I just have a face to face appointment in the first place?”
For confidentiality reasons, the Receptionists don’t ask you why you want to see the doctor. So until the doctor speaks to you, they won’t know whether your issue needs to be dealt with face to face, or by telephone.
“What happens if I miss my phone appointment?”
The doctor will call you again, and leave a message (if that facility is available). The doctor may be running late, but will call back ten minutes later if you are not available the first time. After that, if you haven’t managed to connect, you will need to re-book your appointment.