The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have made us ‘think twice’ in many aspects of everyday life, and attending a GP appointment is no different. With lockdown restrictions being implemented and then changing with what can be confusing regularity, it can be hard to know where you can go, and where you can’t.
So in this blog, we address some of the most common concerns regarding seeing a private GP London wide during this period, discussing some of the key points relating to making, and attending a private medical appointment.
Am I able to visit my GP during lockdown?
Most private GPs can stay open as usual during the latest national lockdown in the UK, which commenced on Thursday, 5th November. If you are unwell or concerned about your health, it is important to seek medical help when you need it. You can also attend any pre-scheduled appointments, unless you are told otherwise.
If you are looking for health information, you may be able to find the answer to your question on your private GP’s website (https://myhealthcareclinic.com/), or on the NHS website (https://www.nhs.uk/).
How can I find a private GP in London that is right for me?
There are many factors which should go into choosing a private GP. Firstly, you should check that the doctors and surgeons working at the practice hold the relevant qualifications and accreditations, including being listed on the General Medical Council’s (GMC) register.
The background and experience of a consultant is important, as are any specialisms which they have, particularly if you are seeing a private GP about a specific condition.
Online, you may find places to check patient reviews of a private GP which you are considering. This can be a good way to read about the patient experience at a private GP in the words of others. You should also be sure of the rates being charged, including the fee for an initial consultation.
What measures are in place to protect me from COVID-19?
Private GPs will have carried out detailed risk assessments in order to protect visitors from COVID-19. Typical measures include; providing a face mask for all visitors; conducting COVID-19 symptoms screening; temperature checks; Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) worn by all staff; protective reception screens; social distancing of 2m where possible; individual treatment pods; a ‘one way system’ in place at the clinic; COVID-19 testing for staff; and limits on footfall.
You don’t need to worry about the protective steps you will need to take, because clear guidance will be issued to you ahead of an appointment, and you can expect instructive signage to be displayed on site.
How quickly can I have an appointment?
This would typically vary from GP to GP, and can depend on; the nature and severity of your condition; how many other appointments are already booked; and whether the GP is running a reduced service.
While many procedures may have changed, that should not stop you from getting the medical care you need during the lockdown. If you are interested in an appointment with a private GP in London then contact us today or call us on 02079711856