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Devonport Health Centre53 Damerel CloseDevonportPlymouth, PL1 4JZTel: 01752 561500
URGENT INFORMATION REGARDING CORONAVIRUS
If you suspect you have Coronavirus, PLEASE DO NOT COME INTO THE SURGERY.
Instead call 111 or go online at https://111.nhs.uk/
For more information about Coronavirus please go to
Instead of phoning the surgery to make an appointment, you’ll be able to tell us about your symptoms online – through the practice website. This easy-to-use system – eConsult – will make it quicker and easier to get the help you need.
If you don’t access to the internet to fill out an eConsult, you can phone the surgery at any time. If that’s the case, a patient advisor will ask you about your symptoms and fill out an eConsult for you.
We’ll then get in touch to let you know the best course of action.
How does it work?
You can fill out an eConsult on any device (computer, tablet or phone) from 8am on Monday to 6pm on Friday. You don’t need to log in and there are no passwords to remember.
Simply go to www.devonporthealthcentre.co.uk (or search for ‘Devonport Health Centre’) and click on the eConsult ‘banner’ in the middle of our homepage.
You’ll then be asked to follow the instructions, which are essentially the same questions you’d be asked during a GP appointment.
It’s important you provide enough information about your condition to make sure your request isn’t delayed.
If you phone the surgery, a patient advisor will ask you the same questions and fill out the eConsult for you.
Once you’ve submitted the form, your information will be reviewed. We’ll then be in touch by 6pm on the next working day to let you know the next step.
This might be:
If your symptoms are urgent, the eConsult system will highlight it and we’ll deal with you as a priority. We may also direct you to the Minor Injuries Unit or Accident and Emergency if your case is more serious.
It’s important to note that eConsult doesn’t replace the ‘111’ out-of-hours service (more details below).
Why are we making this change?
The UK is experiencing a shortage of GPs, and Plymouth is one of the worst-affected cities. This practice is losing the equivalent of 12 hours of GPs’ time every month due to people failing to attend appointments. Patients are also making GP appointments when other members of the team can deal with their problem or query.
This change will allow us to make better use of GPs’ precious time and make life easier for you.
It will also reduce the time it takes to get an appointment and cut down phone wait times. You’ll also avoid unnecessary trips to the surgery. Plus, you can log on to eConsult from the comfort of your own home and take as much time as you want in describing your symptoms. It will also help people who might be embarrassed to discuss their symptoms face to face.
Devonport Health Centre is not alone in making this change. More than 1,000 GP practices across the UK already use online consultations, and more than a million patients have submitted online consultations. In fact, most GP practices in Devon already offer online consultations.
What if my condition is life-threatening?
If you are unable to attend an appointment please ensure you telephone us at the earliest possible time (at least one hour before your appointment time) we can then offer the appointment to another patient. You can only cancel appointments by telephone or by using your online services account. We do not accept cancellations by any other method.
The practice has a high non attendance rate. It is frustrating when we are unable to offer appointments to some patients and we lose on average 10 hours of Doctors appointments and 30 hours of Nursing appointments each month due to non attendance.
The practice operates a policy where if a patient fails to attend three or more appointments they will not be able to book advance appointments with Doctors or Nurses. This will mean calling on the day you would like to be seen and if an appointment is still available it can be booked but they are on a first come first serviced basis and you may have to call back.
We are now offering E-consultation, you can access a wide range of self help, request Fit Notes, ask for advice ore results of tests. The video below explains how this works.
You can access the e-consult from our home page.
There are a limited number of appointments available to book online which includes cervical smear and blood tests.
Most of the appointments need to be booked via the Reception to ensure that we give the correct amount of time for the blood tests and chronic disease reviews dependent on the condition we are booking for.
You can book and cancel appointments in the following ways:
By telephoning reception on 01752 561500. Please don't be offended when being asked why you would like an appointment. Our Administrators are asking so that they ensure you are seen by the most appropriate person and that you have the correct amount of time. They are bound by the same confidentiality as the clinical team.
You can register for online services which will enable you to cancel appointments, request medication, check whether a prescription has been issued and update your contact details.
PLEASE NOTE YOU CAN ONLY CANCEL APPOINTMENTS USING YOUR ONLINE SERVICES ACCOUNT OR BY TELEPHONING THE PRACTICE.
Whilst we encourage our patients to come to the surgery, where we have the proper equipment and facilities available, we do appreciate this is not always possible. In this respect, if you do need a home visit, you can help us by calling reception before 10:00. The time of the visit cannot be estimated so please be patient, if the receptionist feels the visit is urgent then she will transfer you to a GP immediately.
You may only request a home visit if you are housebound or are too ill to visit the practice. Your GP will only visit you at home if they think that your medical condition requires it and will also decide how urgently a visit is needed. Please bear this in mind and be prepared to provide suitable details to enable the doctor to schedule house calls
You can also be visited at home by a community nurse if you are referred by your GP. You should also be visited at home by a health visitor if you have recently had a baby or if you are newly registered with a GP and have a child under five years.
You do not require a doctor's sickness certificate for any illness lasting seven days or less. Your employer may however require you to complete a self-certification form (SC2) which is available from your employer or on the HMRC website.
If you are sick for more than seven days, your employer can ask you to give them some form of medical evidence to support payment of SSP (statutory sick pay).
It is up to your employer to decide whether you are incapable of work. A medical certificate, now called a 'Statement of Fitness for Work’ (see below) from your doctor is strong evidence that you are sick and would normally be accepted, unless there is evidence to prove otherwise.
You could also provide evidence from someone who is not a medical practitioner, e.g. a dentist. Your employer will decide whether or not this evidence is acceptable. If your employer has any doubts, they may still ask for a medical certificate from your GP.
The 'fit note' was introduced on 6 April 2010. With your employer's support, the note will help you return to work sooner by providing more information about the effects of your illness or injury.
For more information see the DirectGov website (where this information was sourced).
Click on the link below to find out how to book an appointment:
Improving Access to GP Appointments
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