Do I need to see a GP?

Please don’t be offended if you are asked what the problem is when you ring to book an appointment.
This is called Care Navigation and it’s about helping you get to the service you need!

About Care Navigation

Over the last few months you may have noticed your receptionist asking for a brief outline of your problem when you ring to book an appointment.

This is because we have introduced something called “Care Navigation”. It means we have trained our receptionists and clerical staff to help patients find the most appropriate place for their care.  They will be able to give you information about a range of services that may be able to help you so you can make an informed choice about who the best person to help might be.

Receptionists will never offer clinical advice or triage; this new way of working is about offering you the choice to see more appropriate professionals in the practice team or even somewhere else. If they can deal with the problem directly, it will often be quicker and means you may not need to see your GP at all. 

By working this way, it helps to free up time for GPs to care for patients with complex or serious health conditions that can only be managed by the GP. More importantly, it means people can be seen by the professional who is best placed to manage their problem.

The choice is always yours though and you will never be refused a GP appointment but we hope next time you contact your GP and speak with the receptionist you will see the value of seeing another health professional where appropriate.

If you would like someone to explain this to you in person, a member of our practice team will be happy to help.


The Care Navigator might suggest other professionals that could help you better such as:

Pharmacy First Common Ailments Scheme at a Glance Guide

ThinkactionTalking Therapy Services (IAPT)  at a Glance Guide

One You Kent Health and Wellbeing at a Glance Guide

Live Well Kent Mental Health and Wellbeing at a Glance Guide

Age Well West Kent – Health and Wellbeing for Older People at a Glance Guide

Sexual Health Services at a Glance Guide

School Health Services for School Aged Children at a Glance Guide

West Kent Recovery Services (CGL) Substance Misuse at a Glance Guide

West Kent Dental Service at a Glance Guide

Involve Kent Community Navigation for Carers at a Glance Guide

Acute Primary Care Ophthalmology Service at a Glance Guide

Citizens Advice at a Glance Guide

Housing at a Glance Guide

Social Prescribing at a Glance Guide

Health Visitors at a Glance Guide