First Contact System
If you feel you need an appointment urgently (same or next day) we operate a First Contact system.
First Contact is where the doctor will assess your problem and ensure that you receive the appropriate level of care. If you need a same-day appointment you will get one.
In order for the system to work effectively, you must be available to take the doctor’s return call. They will call you back as soon as possible but this could take up to a few hours depending on the volume and urgency of triage calls and appointments. Due to mobile reception locally it is preferable if we can call you back on a landline.
To make an urgent appointment, call the surgery on 015242 61202 and once you have heard the automated welcome message press either 1 or 2 depending upon the urgency of your call.
Once you are put through to a receptionist inform them that you want to speak to or see a doctor urgently and you will be put on the First Contact list. During the course of the conversation you will be asked a few questions;
- Who you are calling about, yourself or someone else?
- A number that the doctor can call you back on. Preferably this should be a landline number as mobile reception can be poor. The number that you give needs to be one that you will be available on. The receptionist can try to give you some indication of how busy triage is but they cannot guarantee when the doctor will call back. We regularly get well over 50 triage calls in a morning alone and they can take a long time to deal with. Also, some calls can be dealt with in minutes whilst others take much longer. The receptionist has no way of knowing this. If you can’t be available to take a call at the time then you may be advised to call back when you can.
- The receptionist may then ask you if you would like to explain briefly what the reason for your call is. This is just the same as receptionists in A&E departments will do. You can decline to give a reason but if you do give a reason then the doctor is better able to prioritise his/her list into the most urgent cases first.
- The doctor will then call you back to discuss your problems and take the appropriate course of action. If the doctor can’t get through they will try again but cannot do this indefinitely. The main thing to understand about the triage system is that IF YOU NEED TO SEE A DOCTOR THAT DAY THEN YOU WILL.