Top Tips from Healthwatch Shropshire about attending GP Appointments

Remember to follow these top tips before attending your GP appointment:

  • Ask for a timeslot for when your remote consultation will take place.
  • Let your health care provider know how you prefer to talk by phone, video or in-person.
  • Find somewhere quiet and confidential and, if this isn’t possible or is tricky, make this clear when you are making your appointment.
  • Start with a phone call if you’re not confident with video technology.
  • Ask for help if you need it and, if possible, do a practice run with a friend.
  • Take some time to prepare in advance, consider what you want to say and key questions you would like to ask.
  • Ask your health care provider to summarise the next steps at the end of the appointment.
  • Remote consultations can be useful for routine appointments or ongoing care with a health care practitioner.
  • Not all appointments are suitable for remote consultations, if you would like to see someone in-person please say so.


Top tips for health and care professionals:

  • Provide a precise time window for appointments.
  • Check that the person is in a confidential and safe place to have the phone or video call.
  • Understand the person’s level of confidence using technology and give people a choice of how to communicate.
  • Proactively check what the patient needs, clarify what is happening next and who is responsible for the next stages of care.
  • Slow down the pace of the consultation, demonstrate active listening.
  • Use the chat function in video calls to make the appointment more interactive, share links to information or summarise next steps.
  • Don’t ask people to provide information you already have access to.
  • Give guidance about how the appointment will work, offer demonstrations, provide an opportunity for a test run/provide some training.
  • Seek feedback about peoples’ experiences and use this to improve the service.

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Page last updated 31 March 2021