NEW APPOINTMENT SYSTEM (and improved phone system being installed shortly)
For access to GPs we have a new system DOCTOR FIRST
- Call the practice to book a GP contact 02476 694001
- GP will call you back
- Discuss your problem with your GP
- We will be installing a new phone system with the ability to queue calls to much improve your phone experience
Practice Nurses and a Midwife appointments are available to book at Reception.
NEW APPOINTMENT SYSTEM = DOCTOR FIRST
The current situation
Our current list size is over 11,000 and continues to grow. Patients seem to be happy with the quality of care they are receiving, but there have been issues being able to make an appointment. The increasing demand for appointments had resulted in some patients raising concerns that they are not able to consult a GP as quickly as we would like.
We have tried multiple different options over the past few months, but we feel that DOCTOR FIRST offers scope to improve patient access to their GP.
What is Doctor First and what does it mean for me?
Doctor First is a GP Led telephone triage based appointment system. The aim is for patient’s to call that morning to speak to a GP that day (this may not always be possible if there is increased demand that day). You will usually be able to talk to the GP of your choice, on the day that you request the contact.. You will not have to queue outside at 8.30am to get an appointment. The new system will be fairer for all.
New phone lines
We recognise out old phone system needed upgrading, the new system will allow calls to be queued so you will not have to call back multiple times. This is expected mid to late January 2019.
What will I have to do to see the doctor?
If you need to see or speak to a doctor then you will simply ring the surgery using 02476 694001. You ring the surgery and book a telephone appointments for your problem whether is urgent or routine.
You will be asked for some brief details about why you are seeking a contact with the GP. If you prefer not to give any details then the GP will still call you back, but those brief details will allow the GP to assess the urgency of the request. The GP will call you back that day.
Will I then get to see the doctor?
After discussing your case, you and your GP will decide together if your problem can be dealt with over the phone or if a face-to-face appointment is necessary. Your GP may refer you to one of our highly skilled nurses if that is felt to be more appropriate. The GP can also book you into an appointment on a future date if this is more convenient (eg for those who work, or around school hours for children).
What other advantages does it offer?
- Many patients with a health problem won’t need to visit the surgery as it can be dealt with on the phone.
- The system will give the GP more time to see those patients that do need a face-to-face appointment.
- Saving some patients the unnecessary inconvenience of attending the surgery.
- The GP will know why they are seeing you and can allow an appropriate time to deal with your problem. This means that appointments should run to time and you will not be kept waiting in the reception areas.
Frequently asked Questions
Can I choose which doctor calls me?
Yes. Just let reception know if you want to speak to a particular doctor and you will be added to their call back list. If that doctor is unavailable then you can call back on a day they are on duty or, if you prefer another doctor will contact you on the day of your call.
What if I can’t attend for a face-to-face appointment during surgery hours?
Extended hours are on offer across the city every week day evening and at the weekends. The doctor you speak to will be able to offer an appointment during these hours.
If I visit the surgery will I get a quick appointment?
No. The receptionist will take your details and add you to doctor’s call back list. You will then be contacted by the doctor later that day. There is no need to queue outside in the morning.
Can I book a doctor’s telephone call for a week or a month ahead?
No. You will need to ring the surgery on the day that you need to speak to the doctor.
What if I need to see a nurse?
Nurse appointments are not affected by the new changes so you can book these in the usual way.
- Monday is our busiest day so if you can ring later in the week it will help us manage the workload
- If you require a home visit please contact us before 10.30am. Home visits are carried out between 12pm and 2pm. You will be called by the visiting doctor prior to the visit to ensure it is the most appropriate way of dealing with your problem.
- Make sure you give reception your most convenient telephone number. If the doctor is unable to get hold of you twice then you will be asked to ring the surgery again.
- Please note that when you call in you may be directed to a non GP member of the team such as our ACP (advanced care practitioner)
- If you are calling about your investigation results please try to do so with the doctor who requested them.
- For travel or immunisation queries please book a telephone or surgery appointment with one of the practice nurses not a doctor. Nurse appointments are not affected by these changes.
- One clinical problem will require one GP contact
- The new system means the number of online bookable appointments has had to be reduced to allow fairer access although at present a small number remain