Don't delay contacting your GP
Healthwatch Enfield caught up with a local GP and Clinical Director of Barnet Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust, Enfield Community Services, Mo Abedi, at his GP practice in Enfield to find out how patients can get appointments with their GP, and what to expect if you have to attend a consultation in person at your GP practice.
All GP surgeries across the country have been working hard to make sure patients and staff are kept safe if they have to visit their GP practice in person. There are strict social distancing and infection control measures in place, with thorough sanitising and cleaning happening in between patients.
GP’s across the country are encouraging patients to still contact their GP if they are feeling unwell or have any health concerns.
All GP surgeries in Enfield are operating under the same guidelines and we heard what patients can expect if they contact their GP.
Firstly, all patients are ‘triaged’ when they phone in. You will be asked some questions about why you are calling, to find out the best way to help you. You might then need to speak to a GP, pharmacist or nurse. An appointment will be made if this is appropriate.
Next, you may receive a telephone consultation. A nurse, GP or pharmacist will call you by telephone at the agreed appointment time to discuss your health problem and/or concerns. The health professional will be talking to you in a confidential space, as they would be if you were visiting in person. Some consultations work better by video if this is possible. If this is agreed as the best method for you, you will be given all the instructions you need to be able to access this service. A GP, nurse or pharmacist will call you at the agreed appointment time.
If you are asked to attend the surgery in person for a face to face consultation, it is important that you do so. Strict cleaning and social distancing measures are in place to keep you safe. Child immunisation and routine screening appointments also require you to attend in person. If you are asked to attend your GP practice in person, it is important that you do so. Practice staff will be able to give you all the information you need to prepare for your appointment and will be able to answer any questions that you have.
Check out our video for more information about what to expect if you contact or are visiting your GP practice. We would like to thank the GP practice staff and our Healthwatch Enfield volunteers who helped us produce this information video.