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Can another Healthcare Professional help?
Do you need to see the GP?
Sometimes the GP is not the most appropriate Healthcare Professional to deal with your ailment. Please see the information on see a Doctor or Healthcare Professional, which might help you decide whether a GP appointment is truly necessary or whether it might be better for you to see a Pharmacist, Optician, Dentist or other Healthcare Professional. You can even self-refer for some services without seeing your GP.
For real life-threatening emergencies such as those below – RING 999
- Chest pain (suspected heart attack)
- Suspected stroke
- Suspected meningitis
- Anaphylactic shock (severe allergy)
- Heavy bleeding or deep lacerations
- Fluctuating levels of consciousness or completely unconscious
- Difficulty breathing or stopped breathing with a change in colour
- New seizure, fit or uncontrollable shaking
For immediately serious conditions such as the following, GO TO Emergency Department (A&E) IMMEDIATELY
- A fever and lethargic (drowsy) child
- A feverish and floppy (unresponsive) infant
- Difficulty breathing
- Sudden, severe abdominal pain
- Accidental or intentional overdose of medication
- Trauma (including falls) and possible broken bones or road traffic accident
Your appointment at the Practice
The Practice operates on an appointment basis for the doctors, nurses and heath care assistant. Appointments are pre-bookable, some are available only on the day for emergencies only. If you have more than one problem to discuss or have language or communication difficulties, please make a double appointment so that we can give you more time. Please do not try to mention another complaint once the consultation has started as it may delay the next patient; please ask the receptionist for another appointment.
Longer appointment time when you need it
If you think you might need a longer appointment to discuss more than one issue, or because of a language or communication difficulty that may require more time to understand the consultation, please mention this when you make an appointment. Also, if you wish to include others in your consultation we will always try to accommodate you, but please let us know so the clinician is fully prepared for you and we can allow more time.
- It is Practice Policy to allow patients to choose whichever Doctor they wish to attend in the Practice
Please help us
If you are not able to attend your appointment please let us know in time so that the time can be used for someone else. If you are late for an appointment you may be asked to re-book.
Missed Appointments and DNA’s
Do you feel frustrated when you cannot get an appointment?
Every year wasted appointments cost NHS £162 million. This can cause serious delays in treatment for other patients. On average approximately 150 patients each month Did Not Attend (DNA) their appointment. This means the patient did not turn up for the appointment and did not contact the surgery in advance to cancel or change the appointment. This currently results in approximately 40 hours of wasted clinical time each month.
Here is a list of the different ways you can access your General Practitioner or Healthcare Professional
Please phone or call in from 08:00 to book any available time on the day or to book ahead.
For minor ailments, results, medication and general wellbeing reassurance you can make a telephone appointment rather than have a face to face consultation with a clinician. Please contact the receptionist if you would like to talk to a doctor or nurse. Clinicians are available at the end of each surgery on a call-back service.
For urgent and emergency conditions you may speak to the nurse who will assess and address your need directly or refer you to another clinician as deemed appropriate.
These are at the new Thurrock Hubs located in Tilbury – GP and nurse appointments are bookable only through your branch.
Can I bring someone to accompany me to the Appointment?
We are generally very happy for patients to bring with them a carer, relative or even a friend. This often helps, particularly when they know you well and it allows them to tell us any observations they would make about you, which can help us in undertaking our assessment. Ultimately this will lead us more quickly to make an accurate diagnosis and therefore help you more.
Also, having someone with you means they can prompt you to ask questions that you may have forgotten, and after the appointment they can help in reminding you what was discussed.
Occasionally we might ask for them to leave but this would be unusual.
If you require interpretation services please contact us in advance of you appointment and we will arrange this.
We will always respect your privacy, dignity and your religious and cultural beliefs particularly when intimate examinations are advisable – these will only be carried out with your express agreement and you will be offered a chaperone to attend the examination if you so wish.
You may also request a chaperone when making the appointment or on arrival at the surgery (please let the receptionist know) or at any time during the consultation.
Giving Consent for Treatment
You have the right to accept or refuse treatment that is offered to you, and not to be given any physical examination or treatment unless you have given valid consent. If you do not have the capacity to do so, consent must be obtained from a person legally able to act on your behalf, or the treatment must be in your best interests.
Your valid consent (agreement to the course of action) is needed for the treatment that’s offered to you before any physical examinations or treatment can be given. If you haven’t given your consent, you can accept or refuse treatment that’s offered to you.
It’s important to be involved in decisions about your treatment and to be given information to help you choose the right treatment. When making treatment choices, you’ll often discuss the options with your doctor or another healthcare professional.
Help prepare for your consultation
The doctor or nurse would prefer to know your symptom before you are seen. If you are uncomfortable telling a receptionist you can write it down at the desk, or if you prefer not to give any
If you have a suspected infectious disease
Please inform reception if you suspect an infectious disease, as this will enable us to deal with it appropriately during your visit to protect you, other patients and staff.
If you require an interpreter to attend with you when you see your Doctor please notify the receptionist and this will be arranged.
Nursing mothers can breastfeed their baby in a private room if they wish, whilst awaiting their appointment… please ask at reception.
Private Medical Examinations
Medical examinations for special purposes such as pre-employment, fitness to travel, elderly drivers, fitness to undertake sports etc, will require longer than a routine appointment.
These examinations do not form part of NHS Services, you will be charged for any such examination. Please check the fee chargeable when you require to arrange any such examination.
Urgent and emergency care services
As a patient, you are registered with the practice, not an individual GP. You can make an appointment with any of the Doctors at the practice. As medical records are now computerised, all Doctors, at any site can access your details. If you prefer, you can make an appointment with a Doctor of your choice. You may need to wait longer to get an appointment with a specific Doctor of your choice, as they may be in high demand at the time.