If there is a genuine medical emergency or concern we will of course see anyone at short notice.
If all our appointments are full or you have a really urgent problem that needs attention before the next available appointment, please make it clear to the receptionist that you feel there is a potential emergency. The receptionist may ask a doctor to call you back straight away to decide the best course of action.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do you use the “Book on the Day” system?
We changed over from a more traditional system about 4 years ago, as did many surgeries in the NHS, partly in response to a government initiative to ensure all patients were seen within 48 hours.
Previously, when most appointments were bookable in advance, all the spaces were taken up 3-4 weeks ahead meaning it was very hard to get an appointment quickly. The new system allows appointments to be made more easily when you really need them.
Since the change to the new system we have done annual surveys of patients at Combe Down and overall satisfaction seems higher.
In addition, far fewer people forget to turn up for their appointments, saving a lot of wasted time.
Why can’t you do a few more Pre-bookable appointments?
We know that the disadvantage of this system is that it’s harder to plan ahead. As explained, we do have some advance bookings available but we have to limit their number. If we booked any more ahead there would be fewer available at the start of each day and the “Book on the Day” system wouldn’t work.