It is not possible to provide all services under the NHS, therefore in some cases you may have to pay a fee.
What is covered by the NHS and what is not?
The Government’s contract with GP’s covers medical services to NHS patients. In recent years, more and more organisations have been involving doctors in a whole range of non-medical work. Sometimes the only reason that GP’s are asked is because they are in a position of trust in the community, or because an insurance company or employer wants to be sure that information provided is true and accurate.
Examples of non-NHS services for which GP’s can charge their NHS patients are:
- Accident/sickness insurance certificates
- Certain travel vaccinations
- Private medical insurance reports
Examples of non-NHS services for which GP’s can charge other institutions are:
- Medical reports for an insurance company
- Some reports for the DSS/Benefits Agency
- Examinations of local authority employees
Private Medical Examinations & Services
- Private Medical Consultation – £150/hour
- HGV Medical Examination & Report – £90.00
- PSV Medical Examination & Report – £90.00
- Taxi Medical Examination & Report – £90.00
- Pilot’s Medical Examination & Report – £90.00
- Racing Car Medical Examination & Report – £90.00
- Private Sick Note – £20.00
- Private Prescription – £10.00
- Private Diagnostic Tests – £POA*
* The fee for a private blood test, smear or ECG will depend on whether a report is required and may also include fees charged by the relevant laboratory.
Letters/Statements of Fact – £20.00 – £50.00*
*The fee for the provision of a letter or statement of fact will depend on the complexity and level of detail required. You will be quoted an exact fee upon making you request.
Completion of Forms:
- Shotgun Licence – £10.00
- Passport Form / Photograph – £20.00
- Driving Licence – £20.00
- Holiday Cancellation – £20.00
- Statement of Fitness (to work/travel/exercise) – £20.00
- Private Association Claim Forms from – £20.00
- Freedom from Infection Certificate – £20.00
- Vaccination Certificate – £20.00
Isn’t the NHS supposed to be free?
The National Health Service provides most health care to most people free of charge, but there are exceptions: prescription charges have existed since 1951, and there are a number of other services for which fees are charged. Sometimes the charge is made to cover some of the cost of treatment, for example, dental fees; in other cases, it is because the service is not covered by the NHS, for example, medical reports for insurance companies.
Surely the doctor is being paid anyway?
It is important to understand that GP’s are not employed by the NHS, they are self-employed, and they have to cover their costs – staff, buildings, heating, lighting, etc – in the same way as any small business. The NHS covers these costs for NHS work, but for non-NHS work the fee has to cover the Doctor’s costs.
Is it true that the BMA sets fees for non-NHS work?
The BMA suggests fees for non-NHS work which is not covered under a GP’s NHS contract, to help GP’s set their own professional fees. However, these fees are guidelines only, not recommendations, and a doctor is not obliged to charge the rates suggested.
Why does it sometimes take my GP a long time to complete my form?
Time spent completing forms and preparing reports takes the GP away from the medical care of his or her patients. Most GP’s have a very heavy workload – the majority work up to 70 hours a week – and paperwork takes up an increasing amount of their time, so many GP’s find they have to take some paperwork home at night and weekends.
I only need the doctor’s signature – what is the problem?
When a doctor signs a certificate or completes a report, 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.
How much will it cost?
The fee charged will depend on the service required. Some simple requests can be as little as £10.00, but more complex requests will incur a higher fee. For details of fees for many of the services available, please refer to the ‘Typical Fees’ section on the back of this leaflet. When you request a private medical service, you will be quoted an exact figure, so you are able to make an informed decision on whether to proceed.
Who will deal with my request?
You can speak to any member of the practice team to make a request for a private medical service. They will pass your details to our dedicated private medical services coordinator, who will contact you to help you with your enquiry. They will liaise with the necessary clinicians on your behalf and arrange appointments if required.
How can I pay?
You can pay by cash or cheque.
You will be required to pay on the day of your examination or upon collection of your form/letter.
You will be issued with a receipt at the time of payment.