In this section
A General Practitioner is
also know as a GP, a local doctor or a family doctor. GPs
specialise in General Practice medicine and care for many different
health problems in all age groups. Some GPs have extra
qualifications in specialised medicine. It is important to
have your own GP who knows you and has access to your complete
medical history to provide you and your family with the best care.
There may be times when you
want to get a second opinion from another doctor. Your GP should
be okay with this.
GPs provide immunisations; monitor children's health and development; treat non-serious accidents such as cuts that need stitching,
minor bangs to the head, and plastering of some fractures; can
talk about your personal concerns and stresses; make referrals to
other service providers and support agencies; and liaise with
hospital staff to help manage your child's care after being in
Ask yourself the following
questions when you visit the GP:
Ask when you book if the practice
'bulk bills'. If you are bulk billed there is no
cost to you. If the practice does not bulk bill costs can vary, depending on the practice and length of
consultation. You will be able to get some of the cost back through
Be prepared to discuss your
concerns openly and honestly. Write down anything that is
important or that you might forget. Ask questions if there is
anything you don't understand.
Call your GP and listen to
their telephone message. They usually have an after-hours number to contact
in case of emergency.
RCH Primary Care Liaison and Division of General
Practice. First published: Jan 2006. Updated October