The National Health Service provides most health care to most people free of charge, but there are exceptions.Some services provided are not covered under our contract with the NHS and therefore attract charges. GP's are not employed by the NHS, they are self-employed, and they have to cover their costs-staff, buildings, heating, lighting etc. - in the same way as any small business. The NHS pays the doctor for specific NHS work, but not for non NHS. The fee has to cover the doctors costs.
The fees charged are based on the British Medical Association (BMA) suggested scales and our reception staff will be happy to advise you about them along with appointment availability.
Examples where a patient can be charged include the following:
- Medicals for pre-employment, sports and driving requirements (HGV, PSV etc.)
- Insurance claim forms
- Prescriptions for taking medication abroad
- Private sick notes
- Vaccination certificates
- Certain travel vaccinations
- Private medical insurance reports
- Holiday cancellation forms
- Referral for private care form
- In certain instances fitness to work forms
Examples where another company can be charged include the following:
- Medical reports for an insurance company
- Some reports for DSS/Benefit agency
- Examinations for local authority employees
Frequently asked questions
What is covered by the NHS and what is not?
The government's contract with GP's covers medical services to NHS patients. In recent years, more and more organisations have been involving doctors in a whole range of non medical work. Sometimes the only reason that GP’s are asked is because they are in a position of trust in the community, or because an insurance company or employer wants to be sure that information provided is true and accurate
Why does it sometimes take my GP a long time to complete my form?
Time spent completing forms and preparing reports takes the GP away from the medical care of his/her patients. Most GP's have a very heavy workload - the majority of GP's work up to 60 hours a week and paperwork takes up an increasing amount of their time. In addition non-NHS work must be undertaken outside of NHS contracted time.
I only need the doctor's signature - what is the problem?
When a doctor signs a certificate or completes a report, it is a condition of remaining on the Medical Register that they only sign what they know to be true. Therefore in order to complete even the simplest of forms, the doctor needs to check the patient's entire record. Carelessness or an inaccurate report can have serious consequences for the doctor, with the General Medical Council or even the Police.