Frequently Asked Questions
When should I call an ambulance?
For any severe symptom that may be life-threatening, please call 000 and explain your symptoms to the emergency operator.
Examples of such symptoms might be:
• sudden onset of crushing chest pain,
• severe difficulty breathing,
• severe dehydration after prolonged heat exposure or fluid loss from vomiting or diarrhoea,
• reduced consciousness or confusion,
• sudden severe loss of sensation or muscle strength in a part of your body,
• sudden severe headache with neck stiffness,
• major trauma in an accident or other injury, or
• acute overwhelming suicidal thoughts.
Do you Bulk-bill?
We are a mixed billing practice with fees determined by your GP depending on the length of time and complexity of your consultation, taking into consideration your personal circumstances. In some situations your GP is able to accept your Medicare rebate as the full cost of the consultation. Please see our Billing guide for more information or call to discuss with our staff. If you’re wondering why we need to charge a fee that is higher than your Medicare rebate please see the information about Understanding Charges.
Who should I book with?
While we have many GPs running their practices at our premises, not all are able to take new patients as they try to keep themselves available for their regular long-term patients. You will be able to get an idea of which GP might suit you best by reading their biographies. If you’d like some help with your choice please call to discuss with our receptionists.
What do you mean by “Independent GPs running their practices at RFMP”?
The only GPs employed by RFMP are the GP Registrars who are specialising in General Practice and not able to set up a practice independently until they’ve completed their training.
All of the senior GPs run their own businesses and contract RFMP to provide a consultation room and the administrative and nursing services needed for them to operate. The GP chooses their working hours and is entirely responsible for the delivery of care to their patients.
Because GPs who choose to work here are like-minded we know that they hold to the same principles of high-quality care delivered with compassion and integrity and putting their patients at the centre of their efforts. We’re also in a position to share support and update knowledge and skills as respected health professionals working alongside each other, all for the best possible service to patients.
How do I book an appointment online?
We use Automed to run our online booking system. This can be accessed online or you can download the App to your mobile phone. You will be asked to enter your name, date of birth, email address and telephone number before you move on to the booking screen. Automed can remember these details with your consent to make it quicker next time.
You will also be asked to give your Credit Card details to hold the appointment. No fee will be taken until you’ve discussed this with your GP at the time of the consultation.
If you have concerns leaving your Card details please call to discuss with our receptionists.
How do I choose an appointment length?
Thank you for thinking about it in the first instance! It’s very important to choose the length of time to match the complexity of the issue of concern. In this way we’re better able to run to time. Please see our suggested times for particular issues. If you’re not sure it’s best to call for advice.
If you have more than one issue to discuss, please bring a list so that you and your GP can prioritise and get through as much as possible in the time you’ve chosen. Sometimes you’ll need to book another appointment for additional time if there’s either too many things on your list or a very important issue that needs more depth of assessment.
When should I book a telephone or video appointment?
These types of appointments were added to the list of Medicare-rebatable consultations to meet the needs created by the COVID-19 pandemic. They continue to generate a rebate if it is safe and clinically-appropriate. Ideally video consultations are best clinically. The rebate for longer consultations is higher if they’re conducted by video rather than telephone alone.
Examples of reasons to book a telephone or video appointment include follow-up consultations to discuss results of any tests or outcomes of any suggested treatments or review of milder symptoms when it is difficult for you to come into the practice. We may also ask you to have a video consult to participate in preparing your GP Management Plan.
What is high-quality health care?
High quality in health care is
• Safe – based on credible evidence gleaned from solid, reliable research or empirically over many years of accepted professional practice; evolving in accordance with new research so responsive and flexible to bring wisdom to the process
• Individualised – taking into account all the factors which make up your life including your family history, personal past health, current and past lifestyle choices, and the particular presenting issue which might vary over time
• Comprehensive – focusses beyond the issue of today and delves into exploring your risk of future health problems to work with you on preventing them; considering you as a whole person; operating in the context of your life
• Empowering – recognises that you are the “captain of your ship” and hold ultimate responsibility for your health, so gives you the information you need to make the best decisions for you and your family; works with you over time to build skills & confidence; helps you understand your options; supports you in your contact with the wider health system
• Team-based & patient-centred – acknowledges the importance of all the various providers of health services to you by communicating with them clearly and promptly; preserves your privacy by holding you at the centre of the process, seeking your consent & keeping you informed.
How can I contribute to getting good care?
• Choose your GP and stick with them – let one person really get to know you well, follow your health journey, share in the challenges, support your endeavours
• Minimise seeing other GPs – continuity of care is vital to reducing risk of errors and ensuring best possible outcomes
• Book enough time for your appointments & bring a list of your concerns – allows best chance to cover top priority issues
• Bring all the information you have including reports, letters, lists of symptoms, medication, past history
• Ask as many questions as you have to make sure all are answered
• Be sure you understand the results, diagnosis and management plan before you leave
• Tell us immediately if something isn’t right
What do I do if I need a doctor after-hours?
For GP medical advice out of our usual opening hours, we recommend the National Home Doctor Service. Call 13 74 25 (13SICK) to book a consultation. Let them know the name of your usual GP.
The nearest Emergency Department is located at Hawkesbury Hospital, 2 Day St, Windsor.
Why have I been asked to do a Care Plan?
When you have a chronic health condition that is complex enough to require monitoring long term and which may contribute to a reduced quality of life if not well-managed, your GP may recommend that you have a GP Management Plan (Care Plan).
This document puts all of the relevant information into one place so that it’s much easier to see progress over time and avoid missing some important step. Your GP and nurse will work with you to set goals, formulate action plans and decide which other health professionals may be able to contribute to management.
Your Care Plan is an easy way for you to keep track, particularly if you have a number of complex conditions or are at high risk of others. And if you need to present anywhere else for a health matter, you’ll be able to show them your Care Plan with all the relevant background information.
Do you do COVID-19 vaccinations?
The COVID-19 pandemic has taught us that there are a number of strategies to reduce your risk of respiratory infection and vaccination is certainly one of them. Of most importance is to:
• Stay home until recovered if you have an infection, don’t use medication to control symptoms and then go out to spread the virus!
• Use a well-fitting mask if in crowded indoor areas,
• Try to keep a distance from others to minimise airborne droplet spread,
• Use clever hand hygiene with soap-washing or ethanol hand sanitisers.
COVID-19 is not the only potentially lethal respiratory infection but it has a much higher morbidity and mortality in the elderly or those with complex & chronic disease. Influenza still causes severe illness and death, even in young healthy people.
For both infections, vaccination can reduce the risk of hospitalisation and dying. We strongly recommend vaccination. We offer vaccination for all eligible regular patients of our practice. Please see further information here.