Appointments & Consulting

How to get help and advice

We operate a ‘Digital First’ system, in line with NHS policy. For all medical advice and help or for any administrative request, instead of booking an appointment, you send a Patchs request. You just answer a small number of questions about your condition in your words or even your own own language if you want – it can translate for us and also back to you.

We respond to most medical queries on the same day if received before 5:00pm: after that we may respond the next day if non-urgent. Admin queries will be responded to according to the requirement.

If unable to use internet services you can phone the surgery. An automated receptionist (the ‘Patchs Telephone Assistant‘) will ask you the same questions as the online Patchs and will send your voice recording to the practice as well as a written transcript. The saves you waiting on the phone for a receptionist. If you prefer you can select a receptionist, who will ask exactly the same questions.

By having the information in advance, the doctor and staff can best meet your needs and prioritise urgent cases.

Information about Patchs

Patches can be accessed from the blue banner on the Home Page of this website or via at the NHS App.

It is recommended to download the NHS App (or use the same service from your PC). This is the NHS ‘Digital Front Door’ and gives access to a growing number of GP, hospital and local services.

Why a ‘Digital First’ policy?

Many medical queries can be managed safely without needing a face-to-face appointment. Having the information in advance allows the GP to quickly assess the most appropriate way to help, saving time and often an unnecessary trip to the surgery. The GP may phone you (the commonest response), send a message with advice, a prescription to the pharmacy, order tests or maybe a referral. Sometimes a face to face appointment may be necessary (in roughly 20% of cases).

We’ll reply by the end of the next 24hr working period at the latest, though usually very much quicker on the same day (if you submit after 5pm it will be dealt with the following day). To cope safely with current high demand, Patchs requests for medical queries are currently not available at weekends or bank holidays and if we reach our safe maximum capacity we may occasionally have to switch it off. When that happens you will be asked to try again the following day or, if it cannot wait, contact 111 by phone or 111 online.

All face to face appointments are pre-booked following a Patchs request. If you turn up without an appointment it is unlikely we will be able to see you at that time, except in an emergency.

Patchs also gives you a secure portal for receiving and keeping all your queries and the advice the doctor or practice gives. It allows us to send confidential information without the risk of it being seen by someone else. You will be notified by SMS when we send something back to you. It is recommended to register a Patchs account to create your personal space.

Patchs gives access to oodles of valuable self help material. You don’t need to register for this service. Patchs is ideal for administrative queries and requests as well as medical matters.

Appointment text reminders are sent – remember to update your contact details!

If you have a face to face appointment please don’t forget to check in when you arrive, either using the automated screen at the entrance or speaking to a receptionist.

Tell the receptionist if you think your problem is urgent or if you are feeling bad and are having difficulties waiting.

We recommend trying to stick to the Doctor who knows you or your problem best. This is especially important if dealing with an on-going or recurrent problem and ensures you get the most efficient personal care. Let us know on your Patch’s form who you would like to see. Most of our doctors are part-time, so sometimes you may need to see someone else sooner.

Please cancel unwanted appointments so others can be offered them. We waste thousands of appointments each year due to people not cancelling. You can easily cancel online from the home page of this website or replying to the text reminder we send.

Consulting a Nurse

Nurse appointments are booked online by Patchs, the NHS App or reception telephone.