Telephone Consultations

Practice Leads

  • Doctors: Ramesh Mehay & Sudhir Krishnan
  • Nurse: Zoe Booth
  • Admin: Chris Rushton

Date Reviewed

6th July 2016

Date of Next Review

September 2017

Here is a summary of the arrangements for patients to speak to GPs and nurses on the telephone during the working day.  Telephone appointments should be offered for the following purposes whenever a patient indicates that that they want it:

  • Non-urgent advice
  • To discuss medication
  • To check if a test result has been received (NB receptionist to check whether it has been indicated that discussion with a doctor is required before offering)

Booking a telephone appt with the Doctor

  • A telephone appointment should be booked in exactly the same way as a face-to-face appointment.  Please add the text “Advice”, “Discuss medication” or “Discuss results” as appropriate onto the SystmOne appointments screen.
  • Tell the patient when the next available appointment is, and with whom, but keep it vague in case the doctors run late (eg: “Dr Smith will ring you after 12:30 today” – 12:30 being the time that the slots are due to start)
  • If the patient wishes to speak to a particular doctor, that is their right, but they must be made aware that the specific person they wish to speak to may not be available that day – if the patient wishes to speak to someone that day, and s/he should be booked in with whoever is scheduled to do the slots.
  • As well as checking the patients name, address and usual phone number (as is standard best practice), it is vital to double check a patient’s contact details for the allotted time of the call – it is not always the same as the home phone number, and occasionally, patients will forget to specify this.

Booking an emegency telephone appointment with the Doctor

  • If a patient rings for urgent advice, receptionists should use their discretion and always interrupt a doctor during surgery in an emergency
  • Receptionists should advise the doctor on call ASAP of any late requests for home visits – often, the doctor will want to ring the patient first
  • If the advice required is urgent but can wait (i.e. not an emergency), book onto a same day available GP appt slot or the emergency doctor's screen for that day.

Telephone appointments with nurses

  • Telephone appointments are available and will replace the surgery consultation slot.
  • If a patient does ring to speak to a nurse, receptionists should make a phone request entry message to the nurse (again double check contact details), relaying any information that the patient may have volunteered (again, receptionists should not ask a patient to explain).
  • If as an extra, receptionists should advise the patient that the nurse will call back after surgery (give an approximate time).