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23.10.23 > Accessing your GP-held records via the NHS app or NHS website

As your GP practice, we have been asked to provide you with, no later than 31 October 2023, access to your full medical record going forward via the NHS app (and NHS website) if you have a suitable NHS login.

Your GP medical record contains consultation notes based on conversations between you, your GP and their team: medicines prescribed to you; all test results including hospital investigations; allergies; vaccines; and your medical conditions along with documents that may have been sent from local hospitals, clinics or other agencies, eg the police. There is likely to be sensitive and personal information within your medical record.

We are supportive of providing you with access to your record, but we wish to do this safely and make you aware that this is happening so that you can opt out, if you so wish. You may wish to speak with us first to understand what it is that you will see, and the risks which may be involved in having such confidential data either on your smartphone with the NHS app installed or online if other people might have access to that information through your devices. If you are in a difficult or pressured relationship for example, you may prefer your records to remain accessible only to those treating you, with them not appearing on your smartphone or online. Government has been clear that if a patient does not wish to have access, then we do not have to provide it. This is one reason why we have asked if you wish to opt out, or have it switched off for the time being.

It's important to remember that documents may, at times, contain information that could be upsetting, especially if they contain news of a serious condition. It can also be a cause for worry seeing results online when it isn't clear what the results might mean, and no one is available to ask, as can be the case during the evening or at weekends, for example.

Sometimes people with a mental health condition might prefer not to see documents that remind them of difficult times in their life. Letters from mental health teams sometimes go into detail about past events, and great care would be needed in deciding whether you would want to see these letters. It is possible for individual items to be hidden at your request and we would be happy to talk about any concerns you may have.

Great care is also needed in case private details might cause harm at home, should people in a difficult or pressured relationship be forced to show their medical record to an abusive partner. Anyone in such a position should make this clear to us at the practice, so we can take steps to keep you safe. This might mean removing access through the NHS app for the time being, or through a careful process where we hide sensitive things. We would talk this through with you.

Requesting access – what do I need to do?

The easiest way to get access is to create an NHS login through the NHS app. Although you can also access your GP records via the internet on a computer, the first bit is easiest if done through a smartphone. If you don't have one, you may have a family member or friend you trust who can help you.

If you use the NHS app, you'll have to set up an account using a unique e-mail address and then 'authenticate' yourself to the NHS system to prove you are who you say you are. This will involve confirming your name, date of birth and contact details. The NHS login has several levels of authentication and to gain access to your records you'll need the highest level of authentication. This generally involves you recording a short video of yourself to prove you are a real person as well as uploading a copy of a suitable identification document. We can sometimes bypass this step if you are struggling, but we'd ask you to try to sign up to the NHS app yourself.

I do not want access - what do I need to do?

If you have received a text message from us then please click on the questionnaire link to let us know that you do not wish this to happen. This will automatically add a code to your record to stop access being granted.

If you have not received a text message you can let us know by clicking here and submitting an admin query to us. We will then ensure access is not granted. If you can't use the online form you can also let us know by phoning our patient services team on 01509 324115 after 9am.

10th July 2023 > Appointments System Changes

As with practices across the country we know that it has been hard to get an appointment recently. Demand for appointments has been higher than the number of appointments that GP surgeries are safely able to manage and we are very sorry if you have found it difficult.

To try and help with this we will be changing our appointments system on 7th August. If you or a person you are contacting us on behalf of have a non emergency issue you will be able to contact us using an online form as well as by telephone. You will be able to use this service for:

  • non emergency issues relating to your health
  • ordering medication
  • booking/ cancelling an appointments

The team will then review your request within two working days and contact you regarding the next steps. Please keep an eye on the practice website for updates on how you will be able to access and use the new system.

This will mean that there will be no need to call us at 8am unless you are contacting us about a problem that is an emergency for that day.

We have been working closely with our Patient Participation Group on the plans, to find out more about the group including how you can get involved please visit their page by clicking here.

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Prescription mix up, wrong pharmacy collected prescription. Receptionist kindly helped – original script voided and and re-issued to correct pharmacy

Thank you for your feedback, we are glad that the receptionist was able to help.

A little put out after being ten minutes late for my appointment, was asked to sit & wait to see if the Dr would still see me. Seems cruel of a "first offence

We are very sorry that we could not accommodate your appointment on this occasion. It is often a question of maintaining the balance of not running late for the other Patients whilst being as accommodating as possible.

Fill the waiting room with bright and cheerful colors

Thank you for your suggestion, we will bear this in mind when we next decorate. At the moment the scheme is neutral to try and keep the atmosphere as relaxing as possible for people while they wait.

I find it difficult to see my preferred Doctor, they know my history. When I ring on the day all the appointments with that specific Doctor have all gone

Thank you for your feedback, we are sorry that it isn't always possible to see your preferred doctor, this is usually as a result of a large demand to see that particular doctor. All of our doctors have access to your notes and are able to help when your preferred doctor is not available.

Absolutely lovely surgery!

Thank you for your positive feedback.

I have had Four Star treatment for the last year

Thank you for taking the time to feedback to us.

My husband and I have had exceptionally good experience throughout the years, he cannot thank the Doctors, Nurses and Receptionists enough for their care and concern

Thank you for your feedback, we are glad that we have been able to help.

I am rather dismayed at there being no water fountain available

We have made water available behind reception at all three surgeries, please ask the receptionist if you would like water and they will be happy to help.

My daughter has Learning Difficulties and the nurse was excellent with her. Explained things clearly and took time to re-assure her. Fantastic practice – Thank You

Thank you for your feedback.

Saw Dr Subramanian, she was absolutely lovely, very professional and friendly and was very thorough. Called me in to see her in person following a telephone consultation which was very much appreciated thank you.

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Saw a nurse for bloods. Just want to say how cheerful and lovely she was. Very helpful and professional.

Thank you for your feedback.

Staff are always so lovely and polite. Anytime I've rang to get an appointment reception staff have always been so helpful

Thank you for your feedback.