5 ways to get more out of your GP appointments
- Make sure you’re in the right place
Our Patient Services team (Receptionists) are often criticised for asking patients what is the matter with them, but there is a genuine reason. Different doctors, nurses and health care assistants (HCAs) in the practice undertake different types of work or specialise in different areas. Asking this helps us prioritise appropriately and ensure fairness for all patients. It may be that you can also get directed to a more appropriate service within the wider healthcare community that can help you without you even having to see a GP.
Talk about only one issue
There is an unspoken rule that you are only supposed to discuss one issue in the GP surgery: and really it’s a good idea. Of course, if the issues are interlinked it’s worth mentioning them all to give the GP the full picture. If you think you have a very complex health issue, or interlinked issues please let our Patient Services Team know when you book an appointment so they can ensure the GP is aware and make an appropriate booking.
- Turn up early to your appointment
For various reasons, GPs themselves are often running late because of emergency situations or medical issues taking longer than a standard consultation. We try our best to run to time but sometimes it just isn’t possible. It is important for you to turn up in plenty of time, otherwise, if you are late, this puts pressure on everyone and makes for a rushed consultation which is no good for you.
- Tell us what you want
Any number of people turn up each week in the surgery with migraines, some will want a sick note, some will want investigations and advice, it is vital to know what your issue is to avoid a wasted appointment for us, and for you.
- Write it down
Studies prove that consultation situations make people anxious, no matter how confident and together you are. It is easy in a consultation where you are feeling rushed, stressed or embarrassed to forget some of the more salient points of your medical issue. Calmly and quietly before the consultation, write it all down.