New Appointment System

If you need to speak to a GP or Nurse Practitioner you will need to call us on the day you are available for an appointment before 12 o’clock. We do have a number of appointments to pre book for the following week but these are taken up very quickly. Receptionist will ask for as much details as possible so that you can be signposted correctly. The GP will triage the details taken and if they feel you need a telephone call or face to face appointment they will let you know. There is no changes to the nursing appointment system and these appointment continue to be booked in advance but we are asking you to call after 12 o’clock if possible to make these appointments.
In Summary
. Please call before 10.30 for a same day appointment.
. If a specified doctor is preferred to ask the receptionist when that doctor is in and you can telephone on that day for an appointment.
. Please let the reception staff know all of your symptoms this can help the GP’s prioritise if necessary.
. Please call after 12 o’clock for all other requests (e.g., sick notes, test results and general enquiries etc).
. If possible, fill in a Patchs online request for the doctor to get in touch again please put as many symptoms as possible on the form.


Why are we changing our appointment system?

Organising an appointment system is very tricky. Demand for appointments is at an all-time high and doctors are already having contact with millions more patients per year than they were just a few years ago. But the percentage of NHS funding going to GP’s has dropped and GP’s are becoming hard to find. So unfortunately there comes a point where the demand for appointments is greater than the possible supply. This means it becomes harder to get the appointment you want at the time you want it. Our on the day appointment system aims to tackle this challenge. We aim to deliver safe and sustainable medical treatment for ALL our patients. This means we need to have an appointment system that can deal expertly with ALL URGENT CASES ON THE SAME DAY and one where less urgent cases can also be dealt with in a safe and effective way.

Why do I have to tell the call centre about my problem?
We want every patient to see the correct professional to deal with their problem. Everything you says is confidential and everyone in the practice understands their duty of confidentiality. We now have a team working together and many problems are better dealt with by a Nurse Practitioner, a Pharmacist or Practice Nurse. If they are now sure they will always speak to your GP. If people “insist” on only speaking to a GP then they are making it harder for everyone to see a GP when a GP is really needed. If you have an embarrassing problem, then we promise we wont be embarrassed. Our reception staff are used to dealing with embarrassing problems in a caring and professional way. We have the respiratory hub which is another service provided by South Sefton PCN this offers times face to face appointment for patients with ear nose and throat problems. These services are provided at a few locations across Sefton including Litherland Town Hall, Maghull medical centre, and Thornton medical centre, this gives patient options to attend a clinic closer to home.

What is Patchs and how does it work

Patchs is our online contact to the surgery about a problem which means you don’t need to phone the surgery. It is excellent for admin type queries i.e. sick noted, results, ordering medication etc. For medical problems it can be good for anything not urgent. It will be triaged and slotted in with the clinician the same way as the telephone calls are. The time for replying will depend on the clinical problem and how urgent it is but you will be told when the clinician will be looking at it. They may just reply online back to you with advice or treatment or send your sick note over or they may telephone you, invite you in for a face to face consultation depending on the problem.

How do I get my results

Blood tests usually come back in 2 – 3 days and scans and x-rays can take 1 – 2 weeks. Some do take longer though depending on the test. If your test was asked for by the hospital then the result will go to them not us. It is then their responsibility to share the results with you and your doctor but this can take 3 weeks or longer. We cannot chase this for you and you will need to contact the hospital yourself.

How long does it take for the practice to get letter from the hospital

Communication from the hospital and us can take some time. Our advice would be waiting a week for a discharge summary to reach us (if you have been in hospital or the emergency department). A clinic letter can take up to 3 weeks to reach us but sometimes can take longer. That is why it is the hospitals responsibility to provide any medication for a month or order tests if they are needed urgently.

The surgery is the first port of call for most patients when illness strikes as well as seeing patients our staff are busy meeting the needs of patients in other ways. See below an insight of some of the things that goes on behind the scenes.

Dealing with documents from secondary care – changing medications, coding diagnosis on to medical records etc
Blood test results
Home Visits
Urgent medication requests
Urgent safeguarding requests for information
Minor surgery
Dealing with subject access requests
sick notes
Mandatory training
Chronic disease management
medication reviews
Patchs online consultations
medical reports
solicitor reports/copies med records
arranging hospital transport
clinical meetings
contacting parents to book childhood immunisation’s
chasing urgent appointments
Tutorials & Supervising registrars