Tel: 01626 888877
Fax: 01626 888360
Barton Surgery, Barton Terrace, Dawlish, EX7 9QH
Here you can find answers to our frequently asked question, if however you fail to find what you are looking for please contact us.

Join The Practice?

The practice welcomes new patients from within the practice area. If you wish to register with the practice, please come into the surgery to pick up the necessary registration documents. A health and medical history questionnaire should also be completed. You will be offered an appointment with the practice nurse for a new patient health check. This is important because it allows us to get to know you better and collect information on your past medical history. There can be a delay in obtaining your records from your previous doctor and, therefore, the new patient information is vital to your new doctor.

If you find it difficult to relate to your registered doctor, you are able to see any one of the eight GPs working at the surgery.

Cancel an Appointment?

We would appreciate as much notice as possible if you are unable to keep an appointment so that it can be offered to another patient. Cancellations can be made by telephone, calling into the surgery or online.

Telephone Appointment?

If you wish to speak to your doctor or a nurse by telephone, the receptionist will take the details, including a short description of the reason you require the call. This information will be passed to the doctor/nurse asking to call you back. We cannot guarantee that the call will be returned that day, in fact it could take up to three days to receive a call back unless the doctor/nurse considers it to be urgent.

Telephone requests for continuation sick notes should always be accompanied by the dates required for the certificate.

If you need to speak to a nurse, your details will be taken and the nurse will call you back when she is free.

Get a Home Visit?

A doctor will visit at home when necessary, but only if you are housebound or extremely unwell. Home visits, where possible, should be requested before 10.00am. The receptionist will take details of your name, address, telephone number, age and some brief details of what is wrong. This allows the doctor to see the most urgent cases first and plan their rounds.

Please remember that a doctor can see several patients in surgery in the time it takes for one house call. Patients can also be examined more thoroughly and further investigations carried out if necessary in a surgery environment. Being unable to get to the surgery does not justify a home visit. It is your own responsibility to arrange transport through friends, neighbours or a taxi. Requests after 1.30pm will be dealt with by the duty doctor.

Common symptoms of childhood: fevers, cold, cough, earache, headache, diarrhoea/vomiting and most cases of abdominal pain. These patients are usually well enough to travel by car and it is not necessarily harmful to take a child with fever outside.

Adults with common problems, such as cough, sore throat, influenza, back pain and abdominal pain are also readily transported by car to a doctors's premises.

Common problems in the elderly, such as poor mobility, joint pain and general malaise would also best be treated in a surgery setting. The exception to this would be the truly bed-bound patient.

Hospital Appointments?

If the doctor refers you to a consultant and you no longer require the appointment, please inform the appropriate department at the hospital.

Get a Sick Note?

You do not need a sick certificate until you have been off work for more than three days. A self-certificate covers the period between three and seven days (including Saturday and Sunday). If you are employed, you obtain this from your employer. For self-employed or unemployed persons, you obtain this from the surgery, the post office or the DSS. If you still require a certificate of illness up to seven days, a certificate can be provided on a private basis, but there is a charge for this service.

Change my Address?

If you change your address please inform the surgery as soon as possible. This helps to keep our records and computer up to date and ensure appointments are sent to the correct address. Please also remember to inform the appropriate hospital department if you are awaiting an appointment or undergoing treatment.

If you move outside the practice area it is important that you register with another doctor as soon as possible to avoid complications, should you need to see a doctor urgently. The doctors are responsible for patients at the address shown on their medical records held at the practice.

Get a Test Result?

It is not always necessary to contact the surgery for test results. If a result requires any action by you or your doctor, the surgery will contact you.

Suggestions and Complaints

Please make a suggestion before you have to make a complaint.  The practice welcomes feedback from its patients as it is only by listening to the users of our service that we can make adjustments and improvements and know what has gone well or not so well.  There are suggestion boxes in both surgeries.
If you are unhappy with anything that has happened to you in the practice or would offer any suggestions about how this might be put right, the practice operates a complaints procedure as laid down by the NHS and our complaints system meets national criteria.


We hope that most problems can be sorted out easily and quickly, often at the time they arise and with the person concerned.  If your problem cannot be sorted out in this way and you wish to make a complaint, we would like to let us know as soon as possible – ideally, within a matter of days or at the most a few weeks – because this will enable us to establish what happened more easily.  If it is not possible to do that, please let us have details of your complaint:

  • within six months of the incident that caused the problem, or
  • within six months of discovering that you have a problem, provided this is within twelve months of the incident

Complaints should be addressed to Mrs Christine Walsh, Manager.  Alternatively, you may ask for an appointment with Mrs Walsh in order to discuss your concerns.  She will explain the complaints procedure to you and will make sure that your concerns are dealt with promptly.  It will be a great help if you are as specific as possible about your complaint.


We will acknowledge your complaint within two working days and aim to have looked into your complaint within ten working days of the date you raised it with us.  We shall then be in a position to offer you an explanation or a meeting with the people involved.  When we look into your complaint, we will aim to:

  • Find out what happened and what went wrong
  • Make it possible for you to discuss the problem with those concerned, if you would like to do this
  • Make sure you receive an apology, where this is appropriate
  • Identify what we can do to make sure the problem doesn’t happen again

Please note that we keep strictly to the rules of medical confidentiality.  If you are complaining on behalf of someone else we have to know that you have their permission to do so.  A note signed by the person concerned will be needed, unless they are incapable (because of illness) of providing this.


PALS is the Patient Advice and Liaison Service and are here to help patients, their families and carers if they have any concerns or questions about their local NHS services including pharmacies, doctors, opticians and dentists. They offer confidential advice and, with your permission, take your concern to the appropriate people. To contact them, telephone 01803 652578 (lines open Monday - Friday 09.00am - 5.00pm) or Email:

Copies of Letters?

Patients have the right to receive copies of letters written about them by one professional to another and is seen as an improvement in communication between patients and health care professionals and also an improvement in the patients’ ability to understand and make choices about their own care and treatment. If you would like a copy of a letter written about you, please ask.

Non NHS Services for which a fee is payable

Some services fall outside the NHS and, therefore, attract a nominal fee as recommended by the British Medical Association, ie holiday cancellation forms and private health scheme forms.  Fees for these services are displayed in the main reception area.  Medical examinations for work, insurance, sports activities, driving, etc are carried out by appointment only and are not covered by the NHS.  We normally require a £20 deposit when booking appointments for medicals.  This deposit is non-refundable if the patient fails to attend for the appointment.  Please note, the surgery can only accept payment in cash or cheque (accompanied by a cheque guarantee card).


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