Welcome to Golden Valley Practice
Welcome along to our practice website where we hope you will quickly benefit from a user friendly layout and a wealth of information about our healthcare services. Find out when we’re open and what to do when we’re not, all from the comfort of your own home.
Our team are dedicated to your continued good health and approach your care with professionalism, discretion and friendliness. You can count on a warm welcome from everyone involved here at the practice.
Appointment System at Golden Valley
We thought it would be a good opportunity to explain how the appointment system at Golden Valley Practice works, and in particular the role of our triage system. Each day there are a mixture of telephone and Face to Face appointments which are bookable in advance with a GP. These can be booked online, on the telephone or via reception. Having these options has many benefits. Many problems can be dealt with over the phone, waiting times for appointments are shorter and it is often more convenient to the patient. If it is apparent that a Face to Face appointment is required during the consultation, it can either be arranged for the same day or shortly after (we have dedicated appointments that a GP can book into). Each day we have a dedicated triage clinician (either our Advanced Nurse Practioner Sarah, or a GP) who deals with urgent medical issues that need assessing the same day. If a patient contacts the surgery with any such issue, they are placed on the triage list.
Due to the nature of issues, triage appointments are designed to deal with only medically urgent issues whereas with routine appointments the clinician has more time to deal with problems and can give a more considered approach to an issue. The triage appointment list is usually extremely busy and the triage clinician has one of the most difficult jobs within the surgery. It is the triage clinician's task to assess the patient over the telephone and decide whether the situation can be managed over the phone or whether the patient needs to be assessed in person. This can either be with the triage clinician or there are several urgent GP appointments which can be utilised if they feel this is more appropriate. It may well be the triage clinician feels that the patients concerns are better dealt with by another health care provider (eg; an optician if a person has eye symptoms) or that a routine appointment is more appropriate. Whilst this can be quite frustrating as a patient if you are wanting your concerns addressed straight away, it is important to remember that the triage system will only work if it is restricted to issues which are genuinely urgent and need dealing with the same day. It is not unheard of for there to be 40+ people on the triage list in one day. Due to the nature of the work, problems have to be assessed in a concise, proficient fashion before the clinician moves onto the next challenge. This allows us to get through the list in a safe, timely manner. Unfortunately, this can sometimes be at the cost of not having a huge amount of time to discuss the patients situation in depth. In these situations, it would be more appropriate to book a follow up routine appointment, which naturally have more time to discuss such issues.
We first employed an ANP and started our triage system back in 2019 when one of our Doctors was off for two months and we were unable to find a replacement GP. It is one of the most successful initiatives Golden Valley has introduced. It has allowed for any patient who phones with an urgent problem to be dealt with in a timely manner. This has improved the lives of our patients, our reception staff and clinicians immeasurably.
In recent weeks we have had a few complaints from patients saying that they are being "fobbed of with a nurse" or that they "want to see a Doctor". These statements are misguided. Sarah has sucessfully completed an advanced degree in urgent care and has a great deal of experience and knowledge in providing triage. She is able to prescribe the same medications as the GP's (when appropriate) and do referrals etc. In the course of my job, I automatically get to review the consultations which each health care professional provides and I can state without hesitation that Sarah performs at as good a level as all the Doctors we have working at the practice.
I hope this helps everyone understand our appointment system. Please contact the surgery if you have any other questions.
We are no longer running covid vaccination clinics here at the surgery. If you have not had a spring booster and are eligible (over 75 years or immunosuppressed) you can still book an appointment at a mass site by clicking the link below:
Dispensary Opening Hours
Please note the opening times for the dispensaries at both surgeries
Monday to Friday 8.00am to 1.00pm 2.00pm to 6.00pm
Monday 8.00am to 1.00pm 2.00pm to 6.00pm
Tuesday 8.00am to 1.00pm
Wednesday 8.00am to 1.00pm 2.00pm to 6.00pm
Thursday 8.00am to 1.00pm
Friday 8.00am to 1.00pm 2.00pm to 6.00pm
Both surgeries are closed 1pm - 2pm for lunch. During this time the telephone lines will still be manned for urgent calls.
Improved Access & Out Of Hours Services
Our practice is part of the Herefordshire GP Federation - Taurus Healthcare. Together, the practices of Herefordshire and Tenbury work to provide 24/7 access to General Practice. This is offered routinely via the Practice or at Improved Access hubs and urgently via 111. We all use the same computer system, so with your permission, it means the professional you speak with can see your whole record and understand your history.
Taurus Healthcare operates six Improved Access Hubs on behalf of Herefordshire General Practice. These can be found at:
- South Wye Medical Centre (Hereford)
- The Marches (Leominster)
- Pendeen Surgery (Ross-on-Wye)
- Kington Medical Practice
- Ledbury Health Partnership
- Nunwell Surgery (Bromyard)
Opening times vary, but you can find full details here: https://www.herefordshiregeneralpractice.co.uk/for-patients/7-day-improved-access. Please note that these are not walk-in centres and you will need to make an appointment. To do so, please ask our reception staff for a ‘Taurus Extended Hours Appointment’.
If you need urgent support when surgeries are closed, NHS 111 can provide access to our local team. We provide telephone consultations, appointments at Station Medical Centre in Hereford and home visits, according to patient need.
Patient Participation Group
We are looking for patients to join our Patient Participation Group. If you are interested please click on the link below and sign up. Our next meeting is scheduled for 14th June at 6.30pm. This will be a virtual meeting via Zoom or Teams.