When making requests, we ask for a brief outline of your problem when you contact to request an appointment.
This is because we have introduced something called ‘care navigation’. It means we are training receptionists and clerical staff to help them help patients by identifying the most appropriate place for their care.
Through this specialist training, our practice team will be able to direct you to the most appropriate health clinician for your needs first.
Receptionists will never offer clinical advice or triage. This new way of working is about offering you the choice to see more appropriate professionals in the practice team or even somewhere else. If they can deal with the problem directly, it will often be quicker and means you may not need to see the GP at all.
By working this way, it helps free up time for GPs to care for patients with complex or serious health conditions that can only be managed by the GP. More importantly though, it means people are seen first by the clinician that is best placed to manage their clinical problem.
Reception staff (care navigators) might suggest other professionals that can help, such as:
The choice is always yours though and you will never be refused an appointment but we hope next time you contact the surgery you will see the value of seeing another health care professional if they are able to help.
If you would like someone to explain this to you in person, a member of our practice team will be happy to help.