The Primary Care Networks have come together to take part in a project aimed towards improving access to GP appointments. This involves providing additional appointments during normal surgery hours and extended opening at ONE of the local area surgeries (GHAC, Bartongate Sugery, Kingsholm Surgery, Pavillion Family Practice and Gloucester City Health Centre) until 20:00 on weekdays and on Saturday mornings.
Patients can attend any surgery offering Improved Access Appointments, regardless of where they are registered. All appointments need to be pre-booked.
How to book an Improved Access Appointment
Ring the surgery as normal. The surgery will offer you an appointment based on what is available. If you choose an Improved Access Appointment, the reception staff will tell you where the clinic is being held and the times available. If this is convenient an appointment will be booked for you. You will be asked for a brief indication of why you want to be seen. This is not because they are being intrusive, but in some cases it may be better for you to see your own GP and they are simply trying to ensure your appointment is booked appropriately.
Who can be at an Improved Access Appointment?
These appointments are for anyone with a new problem, such as tonsillitis or an ear infection, or with a long-term condition that has become worse, for example: a chest or respiratory condition that has become worse and needs treating urgently.
They may also be used for routine consultations, however, if you have already seen your own GP about a problem, or the appointment is about a long-term condition, it may be better for you to continue to see your own GP who already knows about your condition, including any tests or treatments you have received.
Medical Record Consent
The doctor or nurse will need your consent to access your medical record. You will be asked for your consent when you book, and again when you arrive for your appointment. If you later change your mind and do not consent to your record being accessed, you will not be seen.
Attending an Improved Access Appointment
The Improved Access Clinics are staffed by GPs from the surgeries, but it is unlikely you will see your own GP. Please bring a list of any medication you current take, and you might find it helpful to write down your concerns so the GP has a clear idea of what the current problem is. Please arrive 5 minutes early, or on-time for your appointment. If you are late you may not be seen.
Tests or Referral to Hospital
Following your consultation, if you need to have further investigations such as blood tests or x-rays, or you need to be referred to a specialist at the hospital, your own GP will make the referral for you.
If you need medication, such as antibiotics, you will be given a paper prescription to take to any pharmacy to be filled. A list of late opening pharmacies will be displayed outside the surgery.
After Your Appointment
If you have any further concerns or feel you need to be seen again, please contact your own GP surgery to arrange to see your own GP.
Who to Contact
Your first point of contact should always be your own GP surgery who will be able to assist you.
To ensure that this project is successful we welcome feedback from patients who have attended an improved access appointment. To provide feedback please complete the survey found here.