Health Blog


Getting the most from your health service

The Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) in Northern Ireland has worked with a local patient consultation group to issue advice about the pressures on our health service, how to get the most out of your consultation and how to help ensure everyone has fair access to the care they need.

In the community, your GP is the main medical professional available on a regular basis. Over the past 10 years, GP workload has increased a lot and there aren't enough GPs in Northern Ireland to meet the current demand on their time and services. Our services are struggling to meet demand and we can all play a part to ensure we have access when we most need it.

The local government website NI Direct has advice on how to use your health services.

You can find other trusted sources of advice in our health resources section.

Think 3 before GP

  1. Can I self-care?
  2. Can I get advice from trusted online services?
  3. Can I seek advice and assistance from my local community pharmacist?

When you need an appointment

If you need an appointment with your GP or nurse, you can help us by:

  • Answering the short questions from the receptionist. They are not being curious. This information is used to help plan our appointments to ensure everyone sees the appropriate healthcare professional at an appropriate time.
  • Keep a record of your symptoms and think about what you would like to ask your doctor or nurse before the appointment.
  • Cancel your appointment if you do not need it anymore. You can cancel your appointment at reception, by phone or by using our website contact form.

For more detailed information, you can download a copy of the RCGP leaflet.

See also our short articles Choose well and Can't make it? Cancel it!

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