Important - Vaccinations: In line with NHS Highland Direction GP surgeries will no longer be responsible for the delivery of vaccinations and immunisations effective 1st March 2023. If you have any queries regarding child or adult immunisations, please contact the NHS Highland Service Delivery Centre Helpline: 0800 032 0339 open Monday to Friday 9.30am to 5.00pm. For routine immunisations you are requested to wait for an appointment letter before making contact.
Some services provided are not covered under our contract with the NHS and therefore attract charges. Examples include the following:
A full list of the private fees charged is available below:
The fees charged are based on the British Medical Association (BMA) suggested scales and our reception staff will be happy to advise you about them along with appointment availability.
Whenever possible, we try to complete such forms and reports within four weeks of receipt. Sometimes this can take a little longer – the relevant GP might be away on holiday for example. The GPs have to find time to complete this sort of paperwork in amongst all their other duties and it can take time to read through a patient’s set of notes in order to answer the questions raised.
Although it may seem that a form requires no more than a doctor’s signature, it is a condition of remaining on the Medical Register that they only sign what they know to be true. In order to complete even the simplest of forms, therefore, the doctor might have 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. The charge reflects either the time required to check information and/or the degree of responsibility signing the paperwork entails. If you require a form completed urgently (e.g. within 48 hours) then this will usually cost more.
In most cases, we can inform you of the likely charge due when you ask for the paperwork to be filled in. Remember though that not all documents need a doctor’s signature and you may be able to ask another person in a position of trust to sign such documents.
Private Referrals and Providers
If you think you need medical care, but are considering going private it is best to consult your GP first. However here are some hints and things to consider:
Going private with a GP referral
If your GP has recommended that you are referred to a specialist, you can get a referral letter if you have decided to be seen privately. Expect one working week for this to be produced. Once this has been produced, it is your responsibility to contact a private provider – usually a hospital consultant: A limited range of private options are available at Raigmore and you will often need to travel to one of the larger cities for private care. Enquire with private bookings service at Raigmore 01463 704000
Paying for medication and treatments
Please be aware that you have to pay for private consultations, and any tests and treatments recommended. You can normally expect to pay for any medication, follow up tests and review appointments.
Private providers can recommend unusual, and sometimes unlicensed medications for you. The NHS or your local GP is not under any obligation to provide these, and is unlikely to do so unless the recommended medicine would normally be prescribed by a GP under the NHS. Providers who arrange scans or tests are obliged to explain the findings to you and their significance. In most circumstances, providers should also arrange follow up care for surgical procedures and the monitoring of medication.
Going private without a GP referral
Some patient choose to refer themselves to a private specialist, clinic or service – for example for physiotherapy, some surgical procedures, diagnosis of neurodiversity or learning disorders, or menopause care. If you do so you should be aware that not all clinics are of equal quality and you should check the credentials of the service before you make an appointment. Medication may or may not be prescribed on the NHS on the basis of these consultations and some patients may need to be referred to NHS specialists to have a significant diagnosis confirmed before treatment is commenced.
Going abroad for private care
This carries the greatest uncertainty and risk and usually prevents effective aftercare.