IVY GROVE SURGERY ivy.gs eConsult Coronavirus GP 2.0 Help Symptoms Self-care Register

eConsult Online Consultation Service SHORTCUT ivy.gs/econsult

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Alternatives to an eConsult SHOW

At any time, there are always alternatives to submitting an eConsult so that you can get the help that you need

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Want advice from your doctor, self-help information or have an adminstrative request (such as a sick note or test results)?

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Use eConsult and get a response before the end of the next working day or sooner
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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Contact your doctor online and get help by the end of the next working day or sooner

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Requests before 2pm will receive a same day response
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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Sick child? Ask your doctor for help by filling out a quick form

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NB: works for adults too!
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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Get sick notes and recent test results online

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Fill out a quick form and get what you need by the end of the next working day or sooner
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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Contact your doctors before 2pm and get a response before end of day

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If you submit your request after 2pm you will get a response by the end of the next working day
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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Feeling under the weather? Get help and advice from your doctor by completing a simple online form

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Requests before 2pm will receive a same day response
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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No more hanging on the phone to contact the practice - next time submit an eConsult online, wherever you are

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If you need an appointment, we'll arrange one with you
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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When patients submit an eConsult, it could save an appointment for someone else, which might be you

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Let us decide how to care for you - we will respond by the end of the next working day or sooner
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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Take control of your treatment - you can use eConsult to access NHS information on hundreds of conditions online and how to treat them

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Select your condition on eConsult then click the 'I want to help myself' option
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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With eConsult, you can get the help you need online - if you really do need to be seen in person, we'll let you know

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Requests submitted before 2pm will receive a response same day
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults

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Escape the wait - next time you need information or advice from your doctor, fill out an eConsult

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There's no need to call the practice at 8am in the hope you'll be seen today - do it online, it's quicker
The NHS App can also be used to submit eConsults


Please make sure you know what to expect before you submit
Click info buttons below, or consult the reference charts:

What is eConsult?
Find out more
How to use it ESSENTIAL
Hints and tips USEFUL
Recap main points IMPORTANT
eConsult is not an emergency service
A response is not always an appointment
When to use eConsult
Use pain scores safely
Read our eConsult FAQs

What is eConsult?

eConsult is a service that enables GP practices to offer online consultations to their patients. This allows patients to submit their symptoms or requests to their own GP electronically and offers around the clock NHS self-help information, signposting to services, and a symptom checker.

ONLINE CONSULTATIONS ARE MANDATED BY GOVERNMENT

Use of an online consultation service is a contractual requirement for all GP surgeries mandated by NHS England (the government body in charge of health) and fully supported by the Health Secretary. eConsult is only one such service but it is already being used in over 3,000 practices nationally.

NHS England has commissioned the eConsult platform for GPs to use and has instructed NHS Digital to integrate it into the NHS App.

We know this may represent a huge and perhaps unsettling change for patients, therefore we encourage you to read up about this service by clicking any of the buttons below.

Find out more

Introduction

On October 7, 2020, we will be changing our appointment system. We will not be offering future appointments with a GP, rather, we will be promoting eConsult and our website as the first point of contact for patients [from September 23, 2020, the eConsult system will be live and we encourage all patients to start using it].

eConsult is a consultation/triage service where you can securely submit details of your condition or symptom to us online via our website.

Based on your submission, the GP will decide on the best course of action for you, and get a response back to you, either same day, or by the end of the next working day. This response might be, for example, clinical advice, signposting to another service or a prescription, or an offer of further contact, either by telephone, or face-to-face, either on a later date, or same day where this is clinically needed.

The system will automatically flag up any responses of concern which may indicate that we need to see you urgently or same day.

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Real benefits for everyone

There will be real benefits for patients and staff to using such a system:

  • improved timely access to our services
  • improved patient experience
  • patients seen on basis of clinical need
  • avoidance of full (and potentially unsafe) waiting rooms
  • enhanced patient convenience
  • maintained quality of care
  • maintained conitnuity of care
  • empowered patients who know how to self-care
  • more efficient working
  • happier staff who can manage workload and stress levels

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Part of General Practice care

Use of an online consultation service is a contractual requirement for all GP surgeries mandated by NHS England. eConsult is already being used in over 3,000 practices nationally.

It has been shown that at least 70% of requests to the practice do not need an appointment. Using an online consultation service will help GPs to look after everyone.

In this practice, eConsult will be part of a system of care which will also encompass the principles that we have always promoted here at Ivy Grove:

  • self-care
  • self-help
  • signposting to services
  • symptom checking

We realise not everyone will be able to (or wish to) use this service. As all requests for GP appointments will be triaged by the eConsult service, we will assist those in this situation to complete an eConsult, thus enabling them to submit eConsults themselves in the future.

In order to get the best use out of the NHS, we strongly recommend all patients check the resources below for more information, and check frequently asked questions (FAQs) below.

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What can eConsult do?

Click the images below, download the images as a leaflet or visit the eConsult site

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What are the positives of eConsult?

Click the images below, or visit the eConsult site

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How does eConsult work?

Click the image below, or visit the eConsult site

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Information videos

eConsult
overview (1:45)
eConsult - the
patient journey (2:30)
How eConsult
works (2:48)
eConsult - escape
the wait (2:19)
eConsult - photo
uploads (1:27)

eConsult overview

eConsult - the patient journey

How eConsult works

eConsult - escape the wait

eConsult - photo upload

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Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

We realise this is a huge change for everyone, and can be potentially worrying, therefore Janette, our admin lead on eConsult, writes more about the service, whilst Dr Shial, our lead on eConsult, answers your FAQs:

A NEW WAY OF ACCESSING OUR SERVICES

To enable us to manage the care of our patients safely, we need your help. From September 23, 2020, we will be using online consultations (known as eConsult) as the main way of accessing our services. We experience a high volume of phone calls on a daily basis and we appreciate that this can make it difficult for many of you to get through. eConsult will help to improve accessibility to the practice as well as bringing many other benefits.

eConsult enables you to contact a GP over the internet via computer, tablet or from a smartphone. It is accessed via our website or via the NHS app.

This service is available 24 hours a day Monday and Friday so you can submit your request at a day or time that suits you rather than waiting for our phone lines to open. eConsult improves our efficiency by asking you questions that we would ask about your condition so that we have as much information as possible in advance.

It has safety mechanisms built in so that if your answers suggest a more serious or life-threatening problem you will be advised on how to seek urgent help. It may also direct you to services outside the practice like a pharmacy, physiotherapy or talking therapies and also make self-help suggestions. You will even have the option to add up to four photos on most online requests. ivy.gs/selfcare ivy.gs/covid-selfcare ivy.gs/help

At the practice, the eConsult will be reviewed by a GP and we will then provide you with advice, arrange a telephone or video consultation or arrange a face-to-face appointment, as we feel clinically necessary. We will respond to you the same day for eConsults submitted by 2pm, and as soon as we can, but by the end of the next working day at the very latest for those submitted after 2pm. eConsult can also be used for follow-ups of a pre-existing problem. All administrative queries, like requests for a sick note or letter, should be submitted via eConsult too.

We recognise that some people will not be able to use this system and we will provide assistance to these patients; for these instances our reception staff will go through the online consultation with that person instead over the telephone. This will take more time than in the past, but ensures a consistent and fair approach for all our patients. These telephone contacts will be dealt with in exactly the same way as eConsults and will not be given priority. It is important that everyone who is able to use eConsult does so.

Repeat Prescriptions

eConsult is NOT to be used for ordering routine prescriptions, as we have other online ways of ordering a prescription that will continue. Please visit our website for further information on online prescriptions or try the NHS app. ivy.gs/online

Thank you for your help with this new initiative.

The Deputy Practice Manager

Close this letter

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Get to know our website

We encourage all patients to familiarise themselves with our website and to try out the eConsult service.

See the right person

Help page
ivy.gs/help

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How to use it ESSENTIAL

eConsult is not an emergency service IMPORTANT

eConsult is not an emergency service. In fact General Practice itself is not an emergency service either.

For instance, if you have an acute medical emergency, like a suspected heart attack or stroke, or heavy bleeding, you must contact 999 or attend A&E immediately. Please do not submit an eConsult.

If you are unsure what to do, ring 111, use the 111 online triage service or visit our symptom checker or help page.

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Same day response cut-off time is 2pm

If you submit an eConsult before 2pm, you will receive a response same day. After this time, you will get a response before the end of the next working day.

A response from us does not automatically mean an appointment with us, as many cases can be dealt with by other means. See below for examples.

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A response doesn't always mean an appointment IMPORTANT

ABOUT RESPONSES FROM ECONSULT

A same day response DOES NOT automatically mean an appointment or direct contact with us same day.

Responses and decisions are made on the basis of clinical need and appropriateness.

It is therefore important to provide accurate, detailed and honest information in your eConsult so that the GP can get you the most timely and appropriate help.

Example responses from us might include:

  • A text or email with advice, a prescription or fit note
  • A request to contact another more appropriate service
  • A plan to perform some initial investigations/tests
  • An offer of a telephone call to assess further
  • A face-to-face appointment at the surgery

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eConsult is available Monday to Friday

eConsult is available from Monday 6.00am through to Friday 6.30pm.

Outside of these times, if your need is urgent, please call 111 or use the 111 online triage service - it will tell you what to do.

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Check our eConsult usage chart

eConsult can be used for many things, however, some conditions/requests are not appropriate for eConsult. Please consult the table below for some examples:

PLEASE USE ECONSULT DON'T USE ECONSULT
Medical advice Palliative care please call us
Admin, paperwork, forms End-of-life care please call us
Fit note requests Bedbound patients needing attention please call us
Follow-up with a doctor Nursing and care home residents please call us
Medication requests and queries Repeat prescriptions hand in slip, use online service or NHS App
Results queries Babies less than 6 months old please call us
  Nurse procedures (e.g., injections) please call us
  Emergencies A&E or ring 999
  Children aged 12-15 years please call us

If you are unsure whether to submit an eConsult or not, don't hesitate to ask us!

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Please use the service responsibly

We kindly ask that patients use the service appropriately and responsibly.

Examples of inappropriate use include:

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Hints and tips USEFUL

Step-by-step guide to completing an eConsult

Our simple step-by-step guide is coming soon! But if you want to use the service, just go ahead and try it!

If don't want to submit anything formally, but wish to try out the system, please visit eConsult's demo site .

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Give as much detail as possible

You will get more out of eConsult by giving us as much detail as possible in your answers to the questions.

The questions asked are all fully vetted, regularly reviewed by specialist clinical teams and are exactly the sort of questions that a GP would be asking you if you were in front of them or on the phone with them.

Whilst answering these questions fully might take more time and feel frustrating, it helps the GP to get you the most timely and most appropriate help that you need.

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Use the right questionnaire for your query

It seems silly to ask, but please make sure that you use the right questionnaire for your query. So, for example, if you have an admin query, want a specific piece of info, need a sick note, then use the 'I want adminstrative help' option.

If you need advice on a specific condition, try and use the 'I want help for my condition' option rather than 'I want general advice'. When you go to submit an eConsult, if you scroll down the page you will also see a pick list of conditions where you can start from (see image below).

This is important because the questions asked are tailored according to the condition you have (or think you have) and by answering the right questions, this will enable the GP to see what the exact problem is and to make sure nothing more serious is happening. It will also help the GP to get you the most appropriate help.

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List of conditions

Use an eConsult for only one problem

Please try and avoid using one eConsult for multiple different problems. This means that the right questions might not be asked of other conditions, and like in real life, there is a risk that the doctor reviewing your eConsult may be distracted and not focus on what is clinically important.

So, for example, if you have a condition that you need advice for, plus also a sick note for that condition, try to complete a condition eConsult for the first, and an admin eConsult for the second. Although it might be time-consuming for you to do this, it will be your requests will be dealt with more quickly and efficiently overall.

Sometimes one of your issues might need another team, or another member of staff, so it makes better sense to be able to send your request as a single item over to them directly without them having to decipher what they actually need to do.

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Attach a photo where relevant

If you have a rash, skin condition or other visible problem, please attach a photo or two to your eConsult, as this means the GP can manage your condition better.

If you need some tips on taking good clear photos, please see this patient guide , and for information on how to attach photos to your eConsult, please watch this video .

Photos you send are filed into your medical record and become part of it. Please therefore review our privacy policy to make sure you understand the implications of this.

INTIMATE BODY AREAS

Please do not send any photos of any intimate parts of the body, such as genitalia, breasts, anus, and please only try and catch the subject in the photo and not other random people or other people's body parts in the background (yes, it has happened!).

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Use pain scores safely IMPORTANT

eConsult questions are designed with safety in mind. If you present answers that could indicate a more serious condition, you will be automatically referred to emergency services. This is for your safety.

Many questions also ask for pain scores. So, if you report being in severe 10/10 pain, you will, quite rightly, be advised to ring for a 999 ambulance.

Whilst pain is always unpleasant, we also know that it is a very subjective phenomenon, varying in degree from person to person, but it may help patients if they have an idea what the scores 0 to 10 on the pain scale are recognised to represent.

SEVERE PAIN LEVELS

If you have a pain level which is 7 or above (as on the chart below) you must attend A&E or ring for an ambulance.

The following table might help you to complete the pain severity questions safely.

SCORE SEVERITY LONG DESCRIPTION AND EXAMPLES
0 (none) No pain No pain at all; perfectly normal
1 (mild) Very mild Very minor annoyance; mild twinges; barely noticeable (mosquito bite)
2 (mild) Discomforting Minor annoyance; strong twinges (pinch fold of skin)
3 (mild) Tolerable Annoying enough to be distracting; can get used to it and adapt (accidental cut, an injection)
4 (moderate) Distressing Can be ignored if really involved in activity, but still distracting (average toothache, pinching skin really hard with fingernails)
5 (moderate) Very distressing Can't be ignored for more than 30 minutes, but participating in most normal activities (badly sprained ankle)
6 (moderate) Intense Can't be ignored for any length of time; affecting normal daily activities (severe back pain spasms)
7 (severe) Very intense Makes it difficult to concentrate; dominates senses; interferes with sleep; can still function with great effort (average migraine)
8 (very severe) Utterly horrible All physical activity severely limited; can read and converse with great effort (childbirth)
9 (very severe) Excrutiatingly unbearable Unable to speak; crying out or moaning uncontrollably; near delirium (throat cancer; kidney stone)
10 (worst pain imaginable) Unimaginable; unspeakable Unconscious; bedridden; pain makes you pass out (multiple injuries from road accident; crushed limbs)
SCORE 0 (none)
SEVERITY No pain
DESCRIPTION No pain at all; perfectly normal
SCORE 1 (mild)
SEVERITY Very mild
DESCRIPTION Very minor annoyance; mild twinges; barely noticeable (mosquito bite)
SCORE 2 (mild)
SEVERITY Discomforting
DESCRIPTION Minor annoyance; strong twinges (pinch fold of skin)
SCORE 3 (mild)
SEVERITY Tolerable
DESCRIPTION Annoying enough to be distracting; can get used to it and adapt (accidental cut, an injection)
SCORE 4 (moderate)
SEVERITY Distressing
DESCRIPTION an be ignored if really involved in activity, but still distracting (average toothache, pinching skin really hard with fingernails)
SCORE 5 (moderate)
SEVERITY Very distressing
DESCRIPTION Can't be ignored for more than 30 minutes, but participating in most normal activities (badly sprained ankle)
SCORE 6 (moderate)
SEVERITY Intense
DESCRIPTION Can't be ignored for any length of time; affecting normal daily activities (severe back pain spasms)
SCORE 7 (severe)
SEVERITY Very intense
DESCRIPTION Makes it difficult to concentrate; dominates senses; interferes with sleep; can still function with great effort (average migraine)
SCORE 8 (very severe)
SEVERITY Utterly horrible
DESCRIPTION All physical activity severely limited; can read and converse with great effort (childbirth)
SCORE 9 (very severe))
SEVERITY Excrutiatingly unbearable
DESCRIPTION Unable to speak; crying out or moaning uncontrollably; near delirium (throat cancer; kidney stone)
SCORE 10 (worst pain imaginable)
SEVERITY Unimaginable; unspeakable
DESCRIPTION Unconscious; bedridden; pain makes you pass out (multiple injuries from road accident; crushed limbs)

This table is compiled from multiple sources and is intended to be a guide only

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Let us have your contact preferences

As part of the assessment in dealing with your eConsult, the GP might need to ring and speak to you.

We kindly ask that, when submitting an eConsult, that you let us know if there is a time and/or day when you cannot to take a call from us, and any other information that the GP can use to get in touch with you, if required.

You can provide this information in any free text area in the eConsult questionnaire.

We will always aim to stick to your contact preferences, however, this cannot be guaranteed.

Where we have tried to speak to you on two or more occasions and have been unsuccessful, we will use the telephone number and/or email address you have supplied on the eConsult to inform you of any plans or requests to get back in touch with each other.

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Use the NHS App to submit an eConsult

You can also use the NHS App installed onto your smartphone or tablet to submit eConsults [registration required].

eConsults will be delivered to the practice in the same way as if you came from our website.

There are other benefits of the NHS App which you can read about by going to our NHS App page.

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Recap main points IMPORTANT

These are the main points to know before submitting an eConsult. Click to find out more about each point

  • eConsult is not an emergency service
  • Same day response cut-off time is 2pm
  • A response doesn't always mean an appointment
  • eConsult is available Monday to Friday
  • Check our eConsult usage chart
  • Please use the service responsibly
  • Give as much detail as possible
  • Use the right questionnaire for your query
  • Use an eConsult for only one problem
  • Attach a photo where relevant
  • Use pain scores safely
  • Let us have your contact preferences
  • Use the NHS App to submit an eConsult
econsult logo

Choose a common condition below or check the full list:

Acne
Anxiety
Back pain
Colds/flu
Cough
Depression / Low mood

Anxiety and Depression

We're sorry to hear that you're not feeling well.

We've seen a huge increase in the numbers of patients whose mental health and wellbeing have been affected due to the current situation.

If, like many others, you are suffering during these extremely difficult times, we strongly encourage you to visit the extensive mental health support section that we have specially set up for you, so that you can start to get to help that you need.

Please also download our information leaflet to get advice on self-help, self-referral to counselling and other support, including what to do in a crisis.

If you still need help from us, please submit an eConsult:

Anxiety Depression / Low mood

Diarrhoea
Earache
Eczema
Eye problems

Eye problems

You will have the opportunity to add photos to your eConsult. If your eye problem is visible, for instance, eyelid problems, conjunctivitis, cysts, lumps, then please make sure to include a photo or two of your eye(s) taken in good lighting - get someone else to help if it's more convenient.

Check your photos after you've taken them to make sure all shots are clear and in focus.

Proceed to submit an eConsult:

Eye problems

Headache
Joint pain

Back and joint pain

In the vast majority of cases, we would recommend any adult patient with back, neck, joint or muscular problems to refer themselves to Physio Direct, the local physiotherapy service.

There is no need to speak to or see a GP before using this service.

The service will triage and assess patients and also refer for investigation or further specialist review as clinically appropriate.

Please ring 01335 230079 to access this service. Download the Physio Direct poster

Physio Direct is an appropriate first point of contact for your musculoskeletal problem and if you have not already self-referred, we recommend that you do so.

If you still need help from us, please submit an eConsult:

Back pain Joint pain

Please take photos if your limb or joint condition is visible

Where your joint or limb condition is visible, for instance, swelling, redness, deformity, please make sure you take a photo or two of the affected area in good lighting, and in focus, and submit them along with the eConsult.

If needed, please read the patient's guide on taking good medical photos

Skin / Rashes / Fungal

Photos for skin conditions

You have chosen to submit an eConsult for a visible condition.

We consider photos essential in the safe and effective management of your skin condition.

You will have the opportunity to add photos to your eConsult - please make sure to include several photos of your skin problem.

You may need to get someone else to take photos for you if it's more convenient.

Take your photos in good natural lighting.

Take one wider angle shot showing the area of the body affected (for instance a limb, or trunk) but make sure to include the lesion or area concerned so that we get a sense of where the problem actually is, and then take several closer up shots with a ruler or coin next to the lesion or area so that we can judge its size.

If the lesion is raised, you may need to take several photos from different directions.

Most cameras and smartphones have auto-focus. Make sure you wait for the camera to focus before taking the shot. If you are too close, you may need to move back a little to get focus.

Do not send us photos of any explicit body parts, e.g, breasts, genital area.

Check your photos after you've taken them to make sure all shots are clear and in focus.

If you do not send us photos of your skin condition, there may be a delay in responding to your eConsult.

If needed, please read the patient's guide on taking good medical photos

Please confirm that you have read the above and understood:

I will send photos

Proceed to submit an eConsult:

Acne Eczema Skin / Rashes / Fungal

Sore throat

Sore throat

You will have the opportunity to add photos to your eConsult - please make sure to include a photo or two of your throat taken in good lighting - it's best to stick your tongue out or make it as flat as possible and say 'ahh' whilst taking the photo - get someone else to help if it's more convenient.

Check your photos after you've taken them to make sure all shots are clear and in focus and that they show the back of your throat and tonsils clearly.

In line with national guidance, we do not examine throats routinely as doing so is a aerosol generating procedure and therefore a risk during coronavirus pandemic (regardless of whether or not the patient has symptoms of covid), therefore photos are very useful in this situation.

Please confirm that you have read the above and understood:

I will send photos

Proceed to submit an eConsult:

Sore throat

Sinusitis
Urine infection (women)
Full list of conditions
Help for your child

Help for your child

Choose a common condition below or check the full list

Admin Diarrhoea, vomiting Eye problem Fever, high temperature Miscellaneous, generally unwell Skin, rashes, fungal Sore throat Full list of conditions

Please take photos if your child's condition is visible

Where your child's condition is visible, for instance, a skin problem or rash, a limb or eye problem, a sore throat, please make sure you take a photo or two of the affected area in good lighting, and in focus, and submit them along with the eConsult.

If needed, please read the patient's guide on taking good medical photos

Or choose other options:

General advice
Follow-up for existing condition
Medication for existing condition
Blood tests for existing condition

About this option

Use this option for any of the following:

  • Your condition is NOT on the full list of conditions
  • If you are requesting FOLLOW-UP or need to UPDATE us about a condition we have already been dealing with
  • If you are requesting further issue of MEDICATION for a condition we have already been dealing with and that we have already prescribed
  • If you are requesting a BLOOD TEST for a condition we have already been dealing with

Please provide as much detail as possible

When you submit an eConsult, please make sure you provide as much detail as possible about your admin or referral request and include the doctor who has been dealing with you. You can do this within any free text box on the online form. This helps us to deal with your request as effectively as possible. Thank you.

Proceed to submit an eConsult:

General advice Follow-up for existing condition Medication for existing condition Blood tests for existing condition

Admin
Sick notes

Sick notes (fit notes, MED3s)

Fit notes after hospital admission, outpatients or operations

Please ask your hospital doctor to provide you with a fit note before you leave hospital. DO NOT LEAVE WITHOUT IT! Despite what the hospital might say about asking your GP for a sick note, it is the legal and contractual duty of the hospital doctor treating you to provide a fit note should you require it.

Read important information on sick notes after hospital care

If you have already left the hospital without your fit note, please contact the secretary of the consultant whom you were under to obtain a fit note, which they can send directly to you. If you are still having trouble getting a fit note from the hospital, please contact Derby Hospitals Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) or ring 01332 785156.

For sickness absence less than seven days

Doctors are not legally obliged to provide a fit note in the first seven days of sickness absence. You can instead obtain a self-certifying fit note (form SC2) from your employer which will last seven days from the first day of sickness absence, regardless of whether you usually work all those days or not.

Another option is to generate a self-certifying sick note from gov.uk which you can give to your employer.

For sickness absence lasting more than seven days

For sickness lasting longer than seven days, you may request a fit note from the doctor.

When you submit an eConsult, please remember to tell us, in a free text box, the date that you were first off work.

Proceed to submit an eConsult:

Sick notes

Referrals

Admin and referrals

Please provide as much detail as possible

When you submit an eConsult, please make sure you provide as much detail as possible about your admin or referral request and include the doctor who has been dealing with you. You can do this within any free text box on the online form. This helps us to deal with your request as effectively as possible. Thank you.

If there is insufficient detail in your eConsult, we will get in touch asking you to provide more information.

Proceed to submit an eConsult:

Admin Referrals

Go to the full eConsult site
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REFERENCE CHART #1 Main points to bear in mind

Please consider the following before submitting an eConsult
eConsult is not an emergency service - General Practice is not an emergency service; ring 999 or attend A&E for emergencies
Same day response cut-off time is 2pm - if you submit after this time, you will get a response the next working day
A response doesn't always mean an appointment - see example responses below
eConsult is available Monday to Friday - from Monday 6.00am through to Friday 6.30pm, with earlier closing on staff training days
Check our eConsult usage chart - check our usage chart below for when to use eConsult and when you should ring us instead
Please use the service responsibly - e.g., don't become non-contactable, don't spam us every day, don't attach indecent photos
Give as much detail as possible - this means the doctor can get you the right help as effectively as possible
Use the right questionnaire for your query - this means the right questions will be asked about your condition or request
Use an eConsult for only one problem - again this means that the right questions get asked
Attach a photo where relevant - for any skin problem, or any condition that can be visualised, for example, throat, face, limb
Use pain scores safely - check our pain score chart below for guidance - this will mean that you are directed to the right help quickly according to severity
Let us have your contact preferences - e.g., when you would prefer not to be contacted
Use the NHS App to submit an eConsult - the free NHS app allows you to access a range of NHS services from your device [registration required]

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REFERENCE CHART #2 Responses to expect from eConsult

A response does not automatically mean a same day appointment or direct contact with us same day. Example response include:
A text or email with advice, a prescription or fit note
A request to contact another more appropriate service - e.g., physiotherapy, counselling, minor injuries unit, dentist
A plan to perform some initial investigations/tests - we will send you the appropriate forms and instructions
An offer of a telephone call to assess further - for continuity, this may be booked with your usual doctor when they are next available
A face-to-face appointment at the surgery - we will let you know details; NEVER just turn up at surgery unannounced during the global pandemic
All responses and decisions are made on the basis of clinical need and appropriateness

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REFERENCE CHART #3 When to use or not use eConsult

Please use eConsult Don't use eConsult
Medical advice Palliative care please call us
Admin, paperwork, forms End-of-life care please call us
Fit note requests Bedbound patients needing attention please call us
Follow-up with a doctor Nursing and care home residents please call us
Medication requests and queries Repeat prescriptions hand in slip, use online service or NHS App
Results queries Babies less than 6 months old please call us
  Nurse procedures (e.g., injections) please call us
  Emergencies A&E or ring 999
  Children aged 12-15 years please call us

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REFERENCE CHART #4 A guide to pain scores and what they might represent

Score Severity Long description and examples
0 (none) No pain No pain at all; perfectly normal
1 (mild) Very mild Very minor annoyance; mild twinges; barely noticeable (mosquito bite)
2 (mild) Discomforting Minor annoyance; strong twinges (pinch fold of skin)
3 (mild) Tolerable Annoying enough to be distracting; can get used to it and adapt (accidental cut, an injection)
4 (moderate) Distressing Can be ignored if really involved in activity, but still distracting (average toothache, pinching skin really hard with fingernails)
5 (moderate) Very distressing Can't be ignored for more than 30 minutes, but participating in most normal activities (badly sprained ankle)
6 (moderate) Intense Can't be ignored for any length of time; affecting normal daily activities (severe back pain spasms)
7 (severe) Very intense Makes it difficult to concentrate; dominates senses; interferes with sleep; can still function with great effort (average migraine)
8 (very severe) Utterly horrible All physical activity severely limited; can read and converse with great effort (childbirth)
9 (very severe) Excrutiatingly unbearable Unable to speak; crying out or moaning uncontrollably; near delirium (throat cancer; kidney stone)
10 (worst pain imaginable) Unimaginable; unspeakable Unconscious; bedridden; pain makes you pass out (multiple injuries from road accident; crushed limbs)
SCORE 0 (none)
SEVERITY No pain
DESCRIPTION No pain at all; perfectly normal
SCORE 1 (mild)
SEVERITY Very mild
DESCRIPTION Very minor annoyance; mild twinges; barely noticeable (mosquito bite)
SCORE 2 (mild)
SEVERITY Discomforting
DESCRIPTION Minor annoyance; strong twinges (pinch fold of skin)
SCORE 3 (mild)
SEVERITY Tolerable
DESCRIPTION Annoying enough to be distracting; can get used to it and adapt (accidental cut, an injection)
SCORE 4 (moderate)
SEVERITY Distressing
DESCRIPTION Can be ignored if really involved in activity, but still distracting (average toothache, pinching skin really hard with fingernails)
SCORE 5 (moderate)
SEVERITY Very distressing
DESCRIPTION Can't be ignored for more than 30 minutes, but participating in most normal activities (badly sprained ankle)
SCORE 6 (moderate)
SEVERITY Intense
DESCRIPTION Can't be ignored for any length of time; affecting normal daily activities (severe back pain spasms)
SCORE 7 (severe)
SEVERITY Very intense
DESCRIPTION Makes it difficult to concentrate; dominates senses; interferes with sleep; can still function with great effort (average migraine)
SCORE 8 (very severe)
SEVERITY Utterly horrible
DESCRIPTION All physical activity severely limited; can read and converse with great effort (childbirth)
SCORE 9 (very severe)
SEVERITY Excrutiatingly unbearable
DESCRIPTION Unable to speak; crying out or moaning uncontrollably; near delirium (throat cancer; kidney stone)
SCORE 10 (worst pain imaginable)
SEVERITY Unimaginable; unspeakable
DESCRIPTION Unconscious; bedridden; pain makes you pass out (multiple injuries from road accident; crushed limbs)

This table is compiled from multiple sources and is intended to be a guide only

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