Appointments – FAQs

The following provides a summary of the things we are most frequently asked.  

I have an urgent problem, what do I do?

If you need a doctor urgently please make it clear to the Reception staff by telling them clearly what the problem is. Depending on your situation they may advise you to call 999. 

Why do the Reception staff ask me why I need an appointment?

The Practice wants to ensure that you are dealt with in the quickest and most appropriate manner.  In order to do this, we must effectively manage our available appointments. The Reception staff are trained to ask questions to make sure that you get the best service possible by accessing the correct person or service relevant to your needs.  Often, your problem can be dealt with without the need for you to visit the surgery.

You are not obliged to disclose the reason for your appointment but it would be very helpful for the clinician if you do.

All our Reception staff are highly trained and, along with all Practice staff, are strictly bound by the NHS code of confidentiality. 

What if I have more than one thing to discuss with the Doctor?

Appointments with GPs are booked in 15 minute slots.  If you have more than one problem to discuss please tell the Reception staff when you book your appointment.  Unfortunately, should you raise more than one problem with your Doctor during your consultation, they may ask you to book another appointment. 

I’ve arrived late – what will happen?

If you have arrived late, please let the Reception staff know when you are checking-in. We will always do our best to fit you but if you arrive more than 10 minutes late we may have to ask you to re-book. 

I no longer need my appointment

Please let us know as soon as you can if you are unable to keep your appointment. You can do this by telephone, in person or by using the NHS App or Patient Access.

This will prevent valuable appointments being wasted.

What happens if I miss an appointment?

The majority of patients who cannot attend an appointment inform us with plenty of notice so we can utilise the appointment for another patient.  For patients who do not inform us that they cannot attend an appointment the following policy will apply:

  • If you fail to attend an appointment without informing us we will write to you asking if there are any specific problems preventing you from letting us know
  • If you repeatedly fail to attend appointments you may be removed from the practice list and have to find an alternative GP practice

Please help Lancaster Medical Practice make the best use of its appointments for all of its patients.

How do I register for online services?

It is very simple to access the practice’s online services.

You may need to ring the surgery to verify your identity. The Reception staff will provide you with the information required for you to register.

Simply click on the links on the home page and follow the on line registration process. 

You can contact us online for medical purposes to request help and advice for any symptoms you are having, or administrative purposes to request documentation, such as a medical report or fit note. Some patients find this method of contact more convenient than telephoning or visiting the practice. Contact us online using Patchs.

Unfortunately we are unable to offer this service to under-16s.

I would like someone to accompany me during my consultation

You are entitled to have a chaperone present during your examination or procedure. 

If possible, please inform the Reception staff at the time of booking your appointment and we will make the necessary arrangements. 

If you do not inform us ahead of your appointment we may not be able to accommodate your request. In this case it will be necessary to reschedule your appointment.

We understand that you may wish to have your relative or friend present during your examination or procedure for support.  Whilst we support this, we would also recommend one of the Practice Nurses are also present. All our Practice Nurses are trained as formal chaperones.

Page last reviewed: March 27th, 2023
Next review due: November 19th, 2022