Our Clinical Call Back System - How does it work?
When you call the surgery for an urgent appointment, reception staff will ask you about your need for the appointment and will take your name and telephone number. If you may not be at home, please ensure that reception have your mobile number. These details will be added to the clinicians call back list.
The clinician will prioritise the call back list and you will receive a call from the clinician as quickly as possible. Depending on the evaluated urgency of your problem, compared to the others on the list, your call back may be almost immediate but could be a few hours. However, you will be called back that day as soon as possible in every case.
The clinician will discuss your problem with you and will offer help and guidance for any minor illness etc.
The clinician may also decide to offer an appointment with the nurse practitioner or a GP if that is appropriate, either on the same day or later on that week or may recommend that you go directly to A & E at the Hospital.
The on-call Doctor is available to help with any emergencies. He/She will see patients whose problem is a medical emergency which cannot wait until the following day. Please be aware that the on-call Doctor is extremely busy, as his/her duties also comprise telephone advice calls, urgent prescription requests and emergency home visits.
Thank you for your patience while we have been settling down this new system. We have listened to patients’ comments and are sure that the new system:-
Improves the availability of appointments
Ensures that patients with urgent needs can be seen more quickly.
Reduces the frustration of long telephone queues, only to be told that all the appointments have been taken.
NON URGENT APPOINTMENTS
For non-urgent appointments, there are two appointment systems in operation at the practice. The Telephone appointments system and the On-Line appointments system
Telephone Appointments System
If possible please avoid telephoning before 11:00 unless you want an appointment or a home visit that day. We have several lines and the call handlers cannot always answer immediately. When the line is ringing PLEASE HOLD ON as the calls are answered in rotation.
When you call the Surgery the receptionist will ask you for a brief summary of your need for an appointment and will arrange one of the following:-
An appointment with a doctor.
An appointment with our nurse practioner if that is suitable.
A call back to you from a doctor.
Refer you to our Clinical Call Back System (see above) if your need is urgent or if you have asked for a home visit.
On-Line Appointments System with text reminder
This is an easy and simple way to arrange an appointment.
The Surgery encourages all patients to sign up for our online system.
To sign up at the Surgery you must produce photographic identification such as your passport; driving license or a bus pass to reception. You will then be issued a personalised online log in and a password which should only be used by you to access the system.
If you find it difficult to come to the Surgery you may be able to sign up to the system over the telephone. Please call the Surgery and ask to sign up over the telephone and you will be put through to one of our administrators who will, in most cases, be able to complete the procedure for you after asking a few security questions.
This is a very straight forward process and will allow you to make (or cancel) an appointment 24 hours a day.
If you have made an On-Line appointment you will receive a text reminder on your mobile phone. (Please remember, when signing up to this system, to check that the Surgery has your up to date mobile number.
Patients have the right to choose which GP they wish to see – but this may involve a longer wait for an appointment.
The length of each appointment is 10 minutes. Remember to book more than one appointment if your troubles are more complex. Please cancel if you are unable to attend as appointments are always needed by other patients.
Surgeries are allocated to each doctor in line with their partnership share.
In addition some doctors undertake a special clinic e.g. minor operations, diabetes and baby clinic.
Please see the Practice Staff / Doctors Page for full information concerning our Doctors times at the Surgery and their special interests etc.
We operate a very strict policy on missed appointments and you may be asked to leave Northgate Surgery if you miss two appointments without letting us know. The number of missed appointments is displayed in the waiting room to remind everyone of the time that is being wasted.