How to make an appointment
You can call our main switchboard number to book an appointment. Urgent cases will be assessed by the duty doctor on the same day. You also have the option to book in advance if this is more convenient for you.
You can cancel your appointments over the phone or by SMS by replying ‘cancel’ to our automated appointment reminders that you receive if we have your mobile number on file.
You will have already been allocated a “Usual Doctor” who is the named doctor in the practice who looks after you. Which team you are in depends on who your usual doctor is.
You will normally be booked in to see your Usual Doctor or a member of their team.
What will happen when I phone for an appointment?
If you are phoning for a routine appointment, you will be offered an appointment with your usual doctor or, if this is not possible or convenient, with another doctor in the team. We aim to be able to offer appointments up to 4 weeks in advance.
If you are phoning for an “urgent” appointment—the receptionist will ask you for some further information and may be able to offer you an appointment within a week.
If you do not feel that this is appropriate for your current condition, the receptionist will take some more details regarding your complaint.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS INFORMATION IS TREATED AS CONFIDENTIAL AND IS PURELY TO ENABLE THE RECEPTION AND CLINICAL TEAMS TO PRIORITISE YOUR CALL APPROPRIATELY.
What will happen next?
If the receptionist is unable to give you an appointment or you feel you need to be seen urgently, they will ask for your contact number and this information will be passed to the Duty Doctor for the day.
You will be advised that the doctor will phone you back between 8.30 am and 1pm or 1pm and 6.30pm depending on the time of day that you phone and how busy it is.
We ask that you try to be available during these times.
Once you have been assessed by the doctor they will decide on the most appropriate way of managing your condition. This may result in you being given an appointment, so we ask that you stay at your home address until you have been phoned back, or that you are able to come into the surgery on the same day.
What if I can’t come into the surgery at the time allocated or wait for a phone call?
Please ask the receptionist who will be able to give you details of other places locally where you can access health care.
We also operate a Minor Ailment Scheme together with our local pharmacists for the treatment of minor ailments such as coughs, colds, mild ear infections and bladder infections—please ask the receptionist for further details.
Why might it be difficult to get an appointment
The surgery is particularly busy on Mondays and Fridays and especially during the winter months. If your appointment is not urgent, please try to book on a less busy day after 10.30am. Over 10% of patients do not attend for their appointment and do not let the practice know. If you let us know as soon as possible that you cannot attend your appointment, we can then make it available for another patient. You can book to have a telephone consultation with a doctor if you wish. He or she will ring you on the telephone number you have given.
Role of Reception
Our receptionists are usually the first point of contact and are here to help you. They have a lot of information to hand and in most cases will be able to help with your enquiry, ensuring you see the most appropriate clinician. Anything that is discussed with the receptionists or any other member of the team is treated in strict confidence. You have a right to be treated courteously, and our receptionists also have a right to be treated courteously by you. We can offer a degree of privacy at a separate reception booth (in a separate room) if your enquiry is sensitive. Please respect the privacy of other patients by standing well back from the reception desk until your turn.
Texting your appointment reminders
The practice has a system for texting you prior to your appointment to warn you that the next day you have an appointment. This does not give the specific appointment time, but is a useful reminder for you to attend. It also provides a facility for cancelling an appointment.