What can we help you with today?

June 19, 2022

What can we help you with today??

We are initiating a trial to help our team run on time and manage their workloads. During a 15-minute consultation, the clinician needs to provide quality care for the presenting issue, wipe down surfaces, wash their hands, write up the notes and write any referral letters. This takes a good 5 minutes. It is only possible to run to time if patients have realistic expectations about what can be achieved in the 10-minute time frame. 10 minutes goes much quicker than most people think it will.

So before coming to Medplus please can you have a think about what you want out of the consultation time? If there is more than one issue, please prioritise your issues so your clinician can make sure time is dedicated to what troubles you the most. Be realistic about what you expect to get done in 10 minutes of face-to-face time (the rest is for the cleaning, note keeping, and referrals).

Please be aware that getting a repeat prescription for regular meds takes a full appointment in most cases. By the time the doctor reviews the effectiveness of the medication, the ongoing safety of the medication, the notes are reviewed, blood tests reviewed, plans made for the timing of future review are made and you have any necessary physical examination, the consultation will be over.

By listing your priorities your clinician can hopefully tackle the most pressing issue in full. They will also tell you if something low on your priority list is a medical emergency and needs full attention today. If there is enough time to get into problem 2 and 3 then they will be investigated, but in the interests of doing justice to them they may have to wait for another time. We are not into quick and thoughtless medical practice – at Medplus we insist on taking the time to do things properly.

Please consider booking a double appointment in future if you have multiple issues. Also please consider a double appointment with the Nurse Practitioner – which is also more cost-effective.

Please do not ask about issues for other patients during your consult – order other peoples' scripts online or at reception.

We hope to find some measurable benefits. We hope to help our doctors run to time which we know will be well-received by all. We also want to ensure that our team is not taking large amounts of work home because they ran out of time in the consultation. At the moment we are having trouble recruiting and retaining young doctors. General practice is not seen as a sensible career option now, because of the huge volumes of administration. We want to retain our existing staff and make Medplus an even more attractive place to work so that we always have great doctors available to you. If we do not make changes, we risk having a shrinking and aging workforce. It is a problem faced throughout New Zealand. We are probably one of the last areas to be affected. Many practices have had to close their books or patients face long waits for appointments. We hope not to have to get to that point.

Many thanks for your cooperation and understanding.


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