Telephone Triage for Same Day Urgent Appointments
14 August 2019
We recognise that we can sometimes not offer you an appointment when you want one. We are not alone – GP surgeries across the UK are under intense pressure, and all have similar problems (a survey just published shows a national average of 15 days wait for a routine appointment). But we appreciate how frustrating this is for you all, and we have been working with our Patient Participation Group (PPG) to try and address the problem.
The result of these discussions is that, from August 19 2019, we are running a 3 month pilot of a new urgent same-day appointment system. The main change is that you will phone the Practice, instead of queuing up outside in the morning, to request a same-day GP consultation. You will be called back by a doctor, to discuss your situation. A same-day appointment at the surgery will then be available if clinically needed, but experience with this approach suggests that in many cases it will be possible to help you over the telephone. This approach is now used by many surgeries across the country, with generally good patient feedback.
Our aim is to:
- End you having to queue for an urgent same day appointment
- Possibly avoid the need for you to travel to talk to a doctor
- Avoid patients coming into contact with other patients who have infectious diseases like measles, pneumonia, influenza and coughs.
- Make more effective use of the doctors’ time, hence freeing up more routine appointments.
- Ensure patients are prioritised according to their need.
To do this we also need your cooperation, so please spend a few minutes reading how this will work. You can also pick up a leaflet at the Lonsdale Medical Centre.
We thank you for your cooperation, and look forward to your constructive feedback.
|If you think you need a same-day Urgent Appointment|
|1||Please call the Practice between 08:00 -10:00 for a morning appointment, and between 14:00-15:00 for an afternoon one, Monday to Friday on 020 7328 8331.
Please be aware that there will be a limited number of appointments, which will be given out on a first come, first served basis. But we hope, with the more efficient use of our GPs’ time, to provide more slots than now.
Patients will still be able to book routine appointments online, but not same-day urgent ones. We do appreciate that some patients may find telephone conversations difficult, and we will be flexible where possible depending on clinical needs. This will be reviewed as the pilot progresses.
|2||Your call will be answered by a member of our Reception staff, trained on patient confidentiality. Brief details will be taken and passed onto the team of triage Doctors, one of whom will call you back and advise further.
We have upgraded our telephone system to ensure that we have increased telephone lines during these booking periods. We have allocated additional reception staff to answer your calls. During busy periods you may be placed in a short queue, but the telephone system will advise you of your place in the queue, and also give you the option of requesting a callback.
|3||Once your details have been noted, you will receive a call back from a doctor (or in exceptional cases another clinically qualified staff member) – as close to an agreed time as possible. The doctor will ask further about your symptoms and then either give you a face to face appointment in the practice for that day OR agree an alternative way of addressing your need.
We confidently expect the new system, once established, to be more convenient for our patients.
Also to remind you of the types of appointment available at the Lonsdale Medical Centre:
|Type of Appointment||Description||How to Book/Access
|Book an Appointment in Advance||These are appointments for routine issues and are available up to 6 weeks ahead. You can book a face-to-face meeting or a Telephone Consultation with a Healthcare Professional (GP, Nurse, HCA or Pharmacist.)||· In person
· By telephone
· Online via Patient Access or Evergreen.
|NEW Same Day Consultation for Urgent Medical Problem||Urgent Same Day appointment system which will be handled by telephone.||Please see the box above titled “Same Day Urgent Appointments Process”|
|Email/Online Consultation||If you have a question for your doctor which does not require a Telephone Consultation or face-to-face meeting, you could email us at
firstname.lastname@example.org , use e-consult or send us a message through Patient Access (or Evergreen).
|Online via Patient Access or Evergreen. Ask Reception how to register|
More details can be found by clicking the link below.
For information on how best to be seen at the Surgery, select the service or condition you require.
Who do I see?