Helpful tips when booking an appointment
Our routine appointments can be booked up to six weeks in advance and book up quickly particularly during holiday times. Make your appointment in plenty of time and take a note of it in your diary so that you don’t forget.
Our reception staff are experts in the appointment system and the workings of the practice and they work under the same codes of confidentiality as the doctors. Please discuss your needs when booking the appointment to make sure that you don’t have a wasted journey. Sometimes reception staff may need to ask you a few questions in order to book the best appointment for you.
Our last lab van collection of the day is at around 3:20pm so if you need a blood test or a sample, make sure that your appointment is well before this cut off.
If you have an ongoing problem, it is helpful to see the same doctor rather than having to start again with somebody new each time. All of the doctors’ working hours are here on the website or available from reception.
If you are unable to come to your appointment, please let us know as we can almost always fill slots even up to 10 minutes before the allotted time.
If English is not your first language and you feel that an interpreter would be helpful, please inform reception when booking your appointment. Additionally if you require signing or a chaperone, please let our staff know in advance.
Routine GP appointments
Our routine GP appointments last 10 minutes and may be booked with the doctor of your choice. If you have multiple problems or feel that you will need more than 10 minutes, please discuss this with Reception when booking. We are usually able to offer routine appointments within a few days but during the Winter or at holiday times it may be longer. You can book either in person at Reception or by telephoning 441 3119. Our telephone lines are particularly busy between 8am and 9am so please arrange routine appointments outwith this hour if possible.
On the day appointments
A limited number of on-the-day appointments are available each day from 8am. Please use these appointments for problems which cannot wait until our next available routine slots. It will not be possible to choose a particular doctor when booking on the day appointments.
If you have an urgent medical problem and there are no free appointments, our reception staff will offer you an “urgent problem” appointment or ask you to discuss your problem with the duty doctor. Emergency appointments are added onto the GPs’ existing workload for the day and should only be used for medical problems which cannot wait until the next morning. If in doubt, our reception staff will be happy to advise. We would ask that you do not use these appointments for sick lines or prescriptions.
Extended hours appointments
Both Dr Cowan and Dr Cockburn have a small number of early morning appointments starting at 06:45am. As we do not have a full complement of staff at this time, you will be asked to ring the doorbell when you arrive and the GP will let you in. Please inform reception if you would like an early appointment.
GP Specialist Trainee and teaching appointments
We usually have a GP Specialist Trainee doctor working at Firrhill. This doctor is fully qualified with several years of experience in hospital and now specialising to become a GP. The GPST may have longer appointments and sometimes (with patient permission) undertakes video recording of appointments. We also teach medical students in the practice and may ask if you would be happy to speak to a medical student or undertake a video with them before you see the doctor. Of course this is entirely optional and refusal will in no way affect your medical care.