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Charges To Patients

Why do GPs charge fees? Your questions answered

Isn't the NHS supposed to be free?

The National Health Service provides most health care to most people free of charge, but there are exceptions: Prescription charges have existed since 1951, and there are a number of other services for which fees are charged. Sometimes the charge is made to cover some of the cost of treatment, for example, dental fees. In other cases it is because the service is not covered by the NHS, for example, medical reports for insurance companies, claim forms for referral for private care and other letters and forms which require the doctor to review the patient's medical records.

Surely the doctor is being paid anyway?

It is important to understand that GPs 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 for non-NHS work the fee has to cover the doctor's costs.

What is covered by the NHS and what is not?

The government's contract with GPs 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.

Examples of non-NHS services for which GPs can charge their NHS patients are:

Certain travel vaccinations
Private medical insurance reports
Holiday cancellation claims forms
Referral for private care forms
Letters requested by, or on behalf of the patient

Examples of non-NHS services for which GPs can charge other institutions are:

Medical reports for an insurance company
Some reports for the DSS/Benefits Agency
Examinations of local authority employees

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. GPs have a very heavy workload and paperwork takes up an increasing amount of their 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 medical record. Carelessness or an inaccurate report can have serious consequences for the doctor, with the General Medical Council or even the Police.

What will I be charged?

The BMA recommends that GPs tell patients in advance if they will be charged and how much. It is up to the individual practice to decide how much to charge, but the BMA produces lists of suggested fees for the Doctors to use as a guideline.

Charges at Merrow Park Surgery

At the surgery we have a list of fees displayed at reception, and they are also listed below.

THERE WILL BE NO EXCEPTIONS

What can I do to help?

Not all documents need a signature by a doctor.

You can complete the form to the best of your ability in pencil, so the doctor just has to quickly verify your entries against the information we hold.

Please do not expect your GP to process forms overnight, urgent requests may mean that a doctor has to make special arrangements to process the form quickly, and this can incur an additional charge.

FEES FOR NON NHS SERVICES - PATIENT CHARGES 2017

Access to Records  
Maximum Fee (statutory fee under data protection act) £50
Access & admin charges £30 + 50p per sheet, max £50
   
Medicals  
HGV/MGV/PCV/Racing/Sport/Taxi & completion of form £120
Elderly and Over 70 Driver medical £120
Court of protection forms - examination and report £120
Extract from records £75
   
Certificates  
Sick notes or incapacity certificate (for employers) £25
   
Travel and Travel Vaccinations  
Holiday cancellation form (depending on length) £40
International certificate of vaccination £20
Fitness to travel certificate £35
Private prescriptions (eg malaria tablets) no charge
Hep B (for travel) per dose £45
Rabies (per dose, course of 3 required) £60
Yellow Fever and certificate £70
Japanese encephalitis £90 per dose
Meningitis ACWY and certificate £60
Meningitis B £135 per dose
HPV (Gardasil) £150 per dose
Chickenpox vaccine £60 per dose
   
Private Letters, Solicitors, Employers  
Brief letter £60
Extract and letter £80
Detailed letter £133
Examination and report £175
Additional information request £30 - £50
   
Miscellaneous  
Private medical forms
eg BUPA/PPP/OFSTED (depending on length)
£40-70
Power of attorney forms £100
Private consultation (per 10 minutes) £75
Private home visit £150
Private blood tests - calculated per test requested £40 min
DNA Paternity testing £40
Firearms Certificate £150
Your Neighbourhood Professionals. Just a Click Away! Counselling: why wait for a NHS appointment? Contact a private counsellor today Dr Ian Hart - Pain Management Consultant Surrey Trichology Clinic Roots and Shoots Guildford Dental Surgery Guildford Foot Clinic Ltd S M Gotham
Kingfisher Drive, Merrow Park, Guildford, Surrey, GU4 7EP
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Your Neighbourhood Professionals. Just a Click Away! Counselling: why wait for a NHS appointment? Contact a private counsellor today Dr Ian Hart - Pain Management Consultant Surrey Trichology Clinic Roots and Shoots Guildford Dental Surgery Guildford Foot Clinic Ltd S M Gotham
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