Changes to QEMP Appointment System from Monday 11th July 2022
Dear Patients of QEMP
From Monday 11th July, we will be making some changes to our appointment system with regards to the booking of GP appointments. At the beginning of the Covid pandemic, we had to move almost overnight to the majority of GP consultations being on-the-day for both urgent and non-urgent problems. This, combined with ever increasing demand, has created rather a monster and an unsustainable way of working for our GPs and the practice as a whole. We also know how frustrating it is for our patients to be repeatedly told to call at 8.15am!
We hope the new system will have a better balance of on-the-day appointments for genuinely urgent/acute problems and pre-bookable appointments for non-urgent/ongoing issues (which may be anything from 1 to 4 weeks in the future). The majority of appointments will still be telephone or video consultations, but we will also be offering a limited number pre-bookable Fact-to-face appointments alongside these.
Below is some more details on how the system will work:
N.B. THE FOLLOWING CHANGES APPLY TO GP APPOINTMENTS ONLY!
From Monday 11th July 2022:
- MORNING on the day appointments will be for clinically urgent/acute problems only* – these will continue to be telephone/video appointments, with the GP offering you a Face-to-Face (F2F) appointment after assessment if clinically appropriate. If your problem is not urgent/acute, you will be offered a pre-bookable appointment (see below) You will still need to call at 8.15am if you are needing an appointment for a clinically urgent/acute problem
- AFTERNOON appointments will be pre-bookable and available for all other non-urgent/chronic/ongoing problems. The majority of these will be telephone/video appointments but we will also be offering a limited number of pre-bookable F2F appointments. The appointment will not be on the same day as you call -depending on availability and demand it will generally be between 1 to 4 weeks away. We would ask that you call after 11am if you wish to book a pre-bookable appointment in order to keep the phone lines free earlier in the day for urgent problems.
It is essential that we understand what the problem is you are calling about so that you can be offered the most appropriate appointment.
SO, when you call the practice and ask for an appointment with a GP you will be asked the following 2 initial questions by the receptionist:
- What is the problem today?
- How long has this been going on?
It is very important that you answer these questions!!
This will help the receptionist assess the type of appointment you need. They are trained to know about the care and services available to you. They’ll listen and talk to you in confidence about your health problem, to understand your needs, so they can book you an appointment with the right healthcare professional or service. Sometimes you may not need an appointment with a GP at all as there are now other alternatives that we are able to offer or direct you to that may be better placed to suit your problem rather than the GP, for example Clinical and Community Pharmacists, Minor Eye Services and First Contact Physio,
Our receptionists are not trying to be nosy, they are not trying to stop you getting an appointment!, they are trying to make sure the appointments we have available are used efficiently and to make sure those at greatest need are seen first.
There will be a settling period, we will likely have lots of pre-bookable appointments available within short space of time for the first couple of weeks but this will gradually get to be a more realistic 3 or 4 weeks or so as the system become established. We know this may mean a longer wait for an appointment with a GP than you are currently used to, but the current demand for on-the-day appointments or care is just not sustainable in the long term, especially as many of the problems that patients call with are not actually urgent or acute and could be dealt with in a pre-bookable appointment.
*Please be aware, that what may seem like an urgent problem to you, may not actually be a clinically urgent problem needing to be dealt with the same day.
We appreciate the changes may take a while to adjust to and we may need to tweak as go along – we intend to review after 3 months and will be seeking patient feedback at the that time.
We will need you, our patients, to work with us to help work make it a success!
Remember! if you do have a genuinely urgent clinical need to speak to/see a GP we will always ensure that you have an appointment the same day. That has always been the case and will always continue to be so.
QEMP Practice Team
Welcome to our new website.
Please bear with us whilst we work on all the individual areas of the website to make it specific to our medical practice. You may find that you don't have access to all areas at times, this will be due to us working behind the scenes.
With prescriptions requests via systemone online this does remain the same process, but you will need to follow this link Prescriptions to access.