Your local GP surgery provides a wide range of family health services that include advice on health concerns, how to prevent you becoming unwell, vaccinations, examinations and treatment, and prescriptions for medicines. They can also refer you to other health services.
GP surgeries usually have a range of staff including practice nurses, advanced nurse practitioners, health care assistants and pharmacists. You don’t always have to see your GP, another member of the team may be able to see and treat you. The receptionist can help you make the right choice for you. Your GP surgery will work in partnership with community services, which provide health visitors, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and district nurses. If doctors cannot deal with your problem themselves, they’ll usually refer you to a hospital for tests, treatment or to see a consultant with specialised knowledge.
GPs offer urgent appointments, and some practices offer an evening and weekend service. Once you’ve made an appointment with your GP it is important to keep it, or notify the surgery if you have to cancel or change it.
In some practices you can book an appointment or get a repeat prescription on-line or you can have a consultation with your GP online. Simply fill in an online questionnaire and you'll receive a response no later than the end of the next working day. Visit your GP's website for more information.
OUT OF HOURS GP
The out of hours GP service is a separate facility where a team of GPs and nurse practitioners provide services from 6pm to 8am weekdays, bank holidays and weekends. They offer help, advice and treatment if you have an urgent clinical need that cannot wait for your own GP practice to open.
If you need to see or speak to a GP when your surgery is closed, call NHS 111 and, where appropriate, a clinical advisor will assess you, give advice on when and where to go for treatment, or book you in to see an out of hours GP if needed.