ALTERNATIVE RESOURCES - BEST WAYS TO CONTACT OTHER SPECIALISTS
For certain conditions other specialists provide a more comprehensive service than GPs. Before phoning for a GP appointment please consider:
All local opticians are able to provide on-the-day telephone triage and appointments if necessary. They have better instruments for looking into eyes, and can refer to specialist services if they deem it necessary.
They will see
- eye trauma - sticky eyes/ conjunctivitis
- blurry vision - scratches
MEDICINE PROBLEMS/MINOR AILMENTS
Pharmacists in any local pharmacy run walk in appointments and offer advice on medicines that can help in many different problems. E.g.:
- acne - eczema and allergies - pain
- athlete's foot - haemorrhoids (piles) - period pain
- backache - hay fever - thrush
- cold sores - headache - sore throat
- constipation - head lice - thread worms
- cough - indigestion - warts
- diarrhoea - mouth ulcers - verrucae
- earache - nasal congestion - conjunctivitis
Consultations are free and private, and if they will advise if you do need to see a doctor. You will have to pay for any medicine, but it is not usually too expensive. If you are younger than 16, older than 60, on certain benefits, or have one of many other exemption certificates, you can sign up to the NHS Minor Ailments Service to be eligible for suitable medicines needed for free. Just register with a pharmacy of your choice.
Pharmacies can also provide emergency contraception, smoking cessation services and repeat prescription services. A further service is their unscheduled care service, which allows them to provide up to an 8 week supply of routine medications to Scottish GP registered patients while on holiday in other parts of Scotland. Holiday-makers from other parts of the UK can receive a 5 day emergency supply, but are required to pay. Controlled drugs (morphine, tramadol etc) are excluded.
Colinton Pharmacy at 46A Bridge Road is open 09:00am – 5:45pm Monday to Friday, and 09:00am – 1:00pm Saturday. Call them on 0131 441 2352, or check out their website at www.colintonpharmacy.co.uk
Extended Hours pharmacies are available for emergencies. Call NHS 111, or use the NHS pharmacy service to find other nearby pharmacies at http://www.nhs.uk/Service-Search/Pharmacy/LocationSearch/10
For tooth problems including severe tooth ache, broken teeth etc, a dentist is most appropriate. Many dentists keep emergency on the day appointments, and in Colinton this is provided by Colinton Dental Practice at 21 Bridge Road from 08:30 all days of the week. Call them on 0131 441 2999, or check out their website at www.colintondental.co.uk
Please note that Colinton Surgery cannot provide antibiotics for dental conditions e.g. dental abscesses. You must see a dentist for this service.
Information on basic foot care and heel pain management can be found via the following link: http://www.nhslothian.scot.nhs.uk/Community/EdinburghCHP/Services/Pages/Podiatry.aspx NHS podiatry services can be accessed by contacting 0131 536 1627. They can provide
- Orthotic Devices and Insoles
- Limited access to verrucae caustic and cryosurgery (NOT for children)
Please note, corns, callouses, verrucas and warts are best dealt with by visiting the pharmacy for treatment. We can only provide extremely limited cryotherapy or other removal services at the Practice. Self referral forms for podiatry can be collected from Colinton Surgery reception desk.
MUSCLE AND JOINT PROBLEMS
Most times these are due to an injury, or to wear and tear, and don't require to see the doctor. Excellent advice and exercises are available from www.nhsinform.co.uk/msk. There is also a very good smartphone app available free, called "NHS24 MSK help". Both these sources can off you advice on:
Back - Hip; Neck - Knee; Shoulder - Ankle; Elbow - Foot; Wrist, Hand, Finger
If the problem is persisting longer than six weeks, you may benefit from physiotherapy, so refer yourself by calling the NHS24 MSK Advice & Triage Service on 0800 917 9390 between 9am & 5 pm Mon-Fri. In Colinton, there are also several private physiotherapists you may also wish to consult.
Audiologists are accessible if deemed necessary after GP or Practice Nurse review, but can also be accessed privately at The Edinburgh Clinic. Please consider a visit to the pharmacy first, for a course of wax softening ear drops.
Most minor injuries can also be dealt with at the Minor Injuries Clinic at the Western General Hospital on Crewe Road South. It has a walk in service, and is open between 8.00am and 8.20 pm (last booking). It is staffed by specialist practitioners, and offers services for:
- sprains - wound infections
If you want to check if your injury is suitable for treatment at the Minor Injuries Clinic, phone first on 0131 537 3481.
Advice on problems in pregnancy is also available from your midwife, once you have booked.
Your health visitor may be able to help you with many problems during childhood. For example
- advice on pregnancy, parenting, feeding (including breast feeding), sleeping, crying and speech
- support in post natal depression
- family planning and well woman advice
Please contact your health visitor via the surgery reception.
The NHS has a very useful website with many high quality information leaflets at www.patient.info. You can search for advice on your problem, watch videos, and learn about your medicines.