What kind of appointment do I need?
We offer a variety of surgery appointments with the doctor, the nurse practitioner and the practice nurses, as well as telephone appointments. Routine appointments can be booked up to eight weeks in advance. Same day appointments are available, particularly for patients with urgent medical needs.
The receptionists have been trained to help you by asking you questions to establish the best appointment to suit your needs. They are not being nosy and the information is helpful to the doctor or nurse you see but if you are not comfortable with this, tell the receptionist that your reason for the appointment is “personal”.
Surgeries are held within the times shown on our Opening Times page.
The Appointment Availability page has the timetable of when your doctor (and other staff) will normally be available.
How do I book a routine appointment with the doctor? How long is an appointment?
We run an appointment only system and a normal appointment is for ten minutes and allows for two problems to be discussed with the doctor. (The reason why we ask patients to restrict the number of problems per 10 minute appointment to two is to ensure that there is adequate time for the doctor to give your matters the due consideration that they deserve whilst continuing – as far as possible – to ensure that appointments run to time so as not to inconvenience other patients). If you have more than two problems to discuss, please ask the receptionist for a double appointment when booking.
Appointments can be booked by telephoning or calling in at the surgery. You will be offered the next available appointment with your usual doctor. We aim to offer you an appointment within 48 hours, although this may not be with your usual doctor.
Can I book an appointment online or by email?
We changed our computer systems in 2013 and online booking of appointments is an option as of January 2015. This allows only a small proportion of certain appointments to be available online. Please click here to be redirected to the patient access portion of the website or enquire at the reception in person at the surgery for more details. We currently do not support booking of appointments by email.
What if your doctor is not available?
If your usual doctor is not available on the day you wish to attend, we will try to offer an alternative. This may be to see the duty doctor, or the nurse practitioner, or a telephone appointment. You can, of course, choose to wait and see your usual doctor when they are next available.
What if your need is urgent?
We offer same day appointments for medical conditions that are too urgent to wait until the next free appointment. Please tell the receptionist if this is the case. The duty doctor usually sees urgent cases at the end of morning surgery. The nurse practitioner also offers a same day service for minor illnesses.
If it is an emergency, make this clear to the receptionist and you will receive appropriate help as soon as possible.
You may request a home visit for patients who are too ill to attend the surgery. Please call the surgery before 10:00, if possible. The doctor may phone you first as a visit may not always be the most appropriate way to deal with your problem. If possible, please try to come to the surgery instead, not only because home visits are time-consuming but also because we have better facilities for examining and treating you at the surgery.
Consulting your doctor by telephone
The doctors will readily discuss problems over the phone during surgery hours. If you think your needs can be met in this way, please ask for a telephone appointment. These are normally scheduled at the end of morning surgery. Give the receptionist your telephone number and a brief description of the problem and the doctor will telephone you. Please be by the phone!
Appointments with the Nurse Practitioner
Barnaby Bennett is our fully trained and qualified Nurse Practitioner. He offers minor illness clinic appointments throughout the week and can prescribe for your needs. Barney has previously worked in AE at Musgrove park hospital. These appointments are available for a wide variety of minor illnesses, including minor infections, joint pains, back/neck pain, minor injuries and anxiety problems. When you call to make an appointment, you may be offered one with Barney rather than a doctor, if your problem lies within his area of expertise.
Appointments with the practice nurse
Appointments can be booked by telephoning or calling in at the surgery. If you would like to speak to a practice nurse on the telephone, please phone between 11:30 and 12:30.
Contacting the District Nurses
Please phone 0300 124 5606. If you are new to the District Nursing team then you may need a referral by your GP.
Contacting the Health Visitor
Please phone 0300 3230115 – if no-one is in the office, please leave a message or phone number and you will be contacted.
Contacting the Community Midwife
Please phone 07776544898 – if Bethany is unavailable then please leave a message on the answerphone and you will be contacted. This is for non urgent queries.
Making appointments with other members of the team
Apart from the doctors and practice nurses, there are a number of other health professionals who see patients at the surgery. You first need to see your doctor who will refer you to the person who can best help and you will then be offered the next available appointment.