Configure Appointment Details

The Appointment System

To ensure timely access to medical advice for patients whilst safely managing rising patient demand, the surgery utilises a Clinical Triage System whereby all patients are assessed based on their clinical need. The system enables patients to see the right clinician in an appropriate timescale, ensuring faster care and better outcomes. As part of a PCN (Primary Care Network) we can book appointments directly with a number of specialist clinicians who can meet some patients’ needs more appropriately and more quickly than a doctor.

To request an appointment please complete the online request form on our homepage; patients who do not have internet access can contact the surgery by phone and a receptionist will fill in the form on their behalf. All requests are reviewed by our triage team, which  includes a GP. In most cases you will receive a response on the same day, but we will respond to all requests within two working days. In some cases, we may contact you for more information to help us decide on an appropriate course of action.

For patients who walk into surgery, the reception team will complete the Online Request Form on their behalf. All patient requests are dealt with in the same manner by our Triage Team, improving telephone access for  those patients who require immediate advice.

The Online Request System can also be used for your administrative requests to the practice i.e. repeat prescriptions, blood test results. This cuts down the need for you to wait on the telephone, freeing up the phone lines for urgent calls.

Contact Us Online

We have a number of skilled clinical practitioners working at the surgery. Why not use our online form here to contact us and we will book you an appointment with the most appropriate clinician.

This service is open 07:00-17:00 Monday to Friday.

Appointment System

The Surgery offers both face to face and telephone appointments. With your agreement, clinicians may suggest a video call using encrypted tecnology. Depending on your problem, we may advise you to send a photograph of a rash or infection may help the clinician to diagnose the problem. In this case you will be sent a link to your smart phone so you are able to upload a photograph which can be attached to your records.  

All appointments with a GP are booked using our online service .  

Nurse face to face appointments are also available to book via reception or our online service.. This includes childhood immunisations, smear tests, dressings, regular injections and ear syringing.

Blood tests are available at Harpenden Memorial Hospital (the Red House) and can be booked via reception

We are able to provide a translator for your consultation. Please let a receptionist know if you require this service.

If you have a query about your medication please complete the online admin form. 


Urgent Appointments

We understand that not all illnesses are planned and offer same day urgent telephone appointments throughout the day. Please scroll to the top of the page and complete our online form. Please keep your phone near you so we can contact you at short notice. This form is open from 7.30am. 

Other Services

We are able to offer access to a number of other NHS clinicians who run clinics in the surgery. These include, paramedics, minor illness practitioners, pharmacists, mental health workers, dietitians and social prescribers. To ensure that we book you into the correct service please briefly inform the receptionist of your symptoms when contacting us so we can book an appropriate appointment.   

Home Visits

Whilst we encourage our patients to come to the surgery, where we have the proper equipment and facilities available, we do appreciate this is not always possible. If you do need a home visit, you can help us by calling reception before 10:00.

You may only request a home visit if you are housebound or are too ill to visit the practice. Your GP will only visit you at home if they think that your medical condition requires assessment and will contact you in advance of the visit to talk through your symptoms. Please be aware that your telephone display the surgery telephone number as withheld. 

In certain circumstances, your GP can refer you for a home visit by the community nursing team.



With high demand for GP appointments, it is disappointing when a patient fails to turn up for their appointment and has not contacted us to cancel their booking. Released appointments can be offfered to other patients and help to improve access for everyone. Missed appointments are automatically recorded on your medical record. 


PCN Standard Network Hours

The surgery offers extended hours through our Primary Care Network (PCN) new 'Standard Network Hours'. These appointments will be varied including young persons mental health, Covid vaccine clinics and you may need to attend another local practice.

Currently we do offer GP appointments at The Elms on:

Monday evening from 6.30-7.45pm and 

Friday morning from 07:00 - 08.00 

All appointments at this time are pre-bookable. Reception operates on a skeleton staff during this session and general queries and appointment bookings cannot be accommodated.

Telephones and the main reception open at 08:00am and close at 6.30pm. 

These appointments are especially beneficial to those patients who find daytime appointments difficult.


Referrals to a Specialist

This leaflet describes what you can expect to happen when your GP refers you to see a specialist or consultant, at a hospital or a community health centre. When Seeking a Specialist Leaflet

Late For Your Appointment

All clinicians endeavour to run to time but the nature of our work means that this is not always possible. On your arrival, we will inform you of any significant delay to your appointment and appreciate your understanding and patience in these circumstances. 

If you are late for a routine appointment, the clinician will try to see you if time allows. Where this is not possible we will ask you to make another appointment.



If you require a telephone based interpreter please notify the receptionist and she will arrange this for you. If you require an interpreter to attend in person, please inform the receptionist when booking- we may need up to two weeks to organise this service. 


A chaperone can be provided to reassure and support both the patient and clinician.

Our chaperone guidance is designed to assist patients to make an informed choice about their examinations and consultations.

If you would like a chaperone present during your consultation, please either inform the receptionist when booking your appointment or when checking in or speak to the clinician at the start of your appointment.

Download policy here

Cancel an Appointment

It is important that you inform the reception staff if you are unable to attend your appointment, this will allow that appointment to be offered to another patient. To cancel or rebook an appointmnet please either contact a receptionist on 01582 767444 (Option 2) or respond to your appointment reminder text.

Text Reminder Service

We have a texting service which allows you to receive confirmation and reminders about your appointments.

To have this service you will need to register by completing a consent form.

Please remember to update your contact details with us when you change address, telephone numbers and email address.

Training and Teaching Clinicians

Health Education England has approved The Elms Medical Practice for teaching and training within the East of England Deanery. This means we are able to host newly qualified doctors within their Foundation years, as well as those undertaking General Practice training. 

We have also established strong links with other educational institutions and provide training to:

  • Physician Associate trainees (University of Hertfordshire)
  • Final Year Medical Students (University of Cambridge)
  • Year 5 Medical Students (University College London)
  • Year 5 Medical Students (Kings College London)

 The practice team are enthusiastic about the delivery of high-quality teaching and training, and are supported by a dedicated team of educators and administrative support:

Dr Charlotte Allam (Associate Trainer)

Dr Rebecca May (Associate Trainer)

Dr Ellen Sibly (Trainer)

Dr Vidya Kanthi (Trainer)

Dr Hannah Smithers (Trainer)

Dr Danielle Franzmann (Associate Trainer) 

Miss Emma Heaton (Practice Manager – Education Non-Clinical Lead)

Appointments with our learners may be offered to you and booked only with your consent. All learners are closely supervised by a named GP Partner. For training purposes, learners may require video recordings of some consultations and again, only with your consent. These are used solely for teaching and confidentiality is upheld between both the learner and GP educator.  

We hope you will support our commitment to the teaching and training of undergraduate and postgraduate healthcare professionals, and we would welcome any feedback regarding your experiences with them.

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