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Brundall Medical Partnership

The Medical Centre

The Dales
Norfolk NR13 5RP
Tel: (01603) 712255
Open Mon-Fri 8.30-6.30

How to get the most from your DOCTOR or NURSE PRACTITIONER appointment






Be on time


Doctors may run late, but not always, don’t waste all-important minutes.





Each appointment is 10 minutes long including recording the consultation in your clinical record.  Spending just two extra minutes with each person means that the doctor will be well over half an hour late by the time your last patient is seen and this excludes any emergencies.


Your doctor will give patients the time necessary so please try to remember this if you are seen after your appointment time.



Get to the point


There is no need for embarrassment or coyness, and the quicker you mention why you’re really there, the more time the doctor has to deal with your problem. It is recognised that this can be difficult with emotional problems. 


If there is something you are really worried about, for example, a breast lump or crushing chest pain, please mention it first.



Bring your diary


A really good ‘history’ helps the doctor to help you. If you can tell the doctor exactly what happened and when, that makes their job much easier. If possible, try to talk about durations in terms of hours, days, months.  For example, ‘I was sick on Monday, fainted on Tuesday’. And tell the doctor what you have tried – ‘I took Paracetamol and it didn’t help…’



Be descriptive


Using certain words to describe symptoms will help us to identify the problem more quickly. Is your pain dull or sharp? Does it burn? Does your headache feel like a tight band or a sharp and stabbing, for instance? What are you unable to do compared to when you are well?



Use the rest of the team effectively


Need a blood pressure check – book an appointment with the Health Care Assistant.


Need an asthma review – book an appointment with the asthma nurse.





Come in with a huge list of issues


If you have four items it’ll probably take you six to eight minutes to talk about all of them. The doctor then has to think about each problem, examine you and prescribe the right treatment – all in a couple of minutes.   



Leave the most important issue to the end


Don’t say towards the end of the appointment, ‘And while I’m here’ or ‘There are just a couple of other things’.



Get too comfy


Unless you need to show the doctor a huge lesion on your arm, don’t start peeling off scarves or coats and laboriously hanging them up



Expect the doctor to solve everything in one visit


Medicine can be a complex business. Most doctors see people who have several ongoing problems at once which need monitoring and maintenance with the help of the rest of the team.  You may need to wait for referrals to a specialist or try a treatment to see how you get on.



Think that seeing patients is all that the doctor does


The doctor is running late. Sound familiar?  Much of a doctor’s work is administrative.  This is because in between appointments he or she is likely to get constant interruptions with urgent messages (home visit requests, prescription amendments, calls from the hospital or coroner, queries from the Dispensary, urgent letters and reports etc.).




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