I’m not sure that a video or phone appointment is appropriate for me. What should I do?
If you don’t think a video appointment is appropriate for you, please contact your hospital department to discuss this. This might be because you have a special communication need because you are deaf or hard of hearing, or have a learning difficulty for example.
What happens if I need an interpreter?
We can arrange for an interpreter for telephone, video and face to face appointments with your health professional. Please ask a family member or friend to phone the hospital department at least 3 days before your appointment and tell us what language is needed.
What should I do if I can’t attend my appointment at the last minute because I’m ill or something urgent has come up?
It’s very important that you phone the hospital department, even if you need to cancel your appointment at the last minute. We will be able to organise another appointment for you and ensure the health professional you were due to see is aware of this.
Top tips for getting the most out of your appointment
Before your appointment
Write down your two or three most important questions.
Write down details of your symptoms, including when they started and what makes them better or worse.
During your appointment
Don’t be afraid to ask if you don’t understand. For example, ‘Can you say that again? I still don’t understand.’?
If you don’t understand any words, ask for them to be explained.
Write things down or ask a family member or friend to take notes.
Before you leave your appointment
Check that you’ve covered everything on your list you understand, for example ‘Can I just check I understood what you said?’
Make sure that you know what should happen next – and when. Write it down.
Ask who to contact if you have any more problems or questions
Ask about support groups and where to go for reliable information and ask for copies of letters written about you – you are entitled to see these.
Keep your notes from the discussion.
Book any tests that you can and put the dates in your diary.
Questions that you may find useful during your appointment:
Questions about tests What are the tests for? How and when will I get the results? Who do I contact if I don’t get the results?
Questions about treatment Are there other ways to treat my condition? What do you recommend? Are there any side effects or risks? How will I know if the treatment is working? How effective is this treatment? What will happen if I don’t have any treatment? Is there anything I can do to help myself?
What next What happens next? Do I need to come back and see you? Who do I contact if things get worse? Do you have any written information? Where can I go for more information? Is there a support group or any other source of help?
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