Get to the surgery with time to spare. Its sensible to set aside half an hour to be able to log on to the computer and familiarise yourself with the room you are in (where are the sample pots, speculums and other such glamorous questions!). And don’t underestimate the power of a good cup of tea before you start.
Because you have done all of the preparation ahead of time, you can now just get on and deal with the important stuff- seeing your patients.
It can help to have your well used and loved web addresses to hand when face to face with your patients. Locum Organiser can store these if you wish. You can access them on your phone if needed.
It’s useful for your own records and learning to have a method of keeping track of certain patient outcomes, for example, any urgent or 2ww referrals, or just interesting cases. As long as the patient details are anonymised, it doesn’t matter how you go about doing it- a little book in your doctors bag, or something more technical…this can be really valuable for appraisal too.
Our blog by Dr Duncan Walling from FourteenFish is packed full of useful tips for as Getting Ahead for Appraisals as a locum GP.
At the end of your session, consider any issues that might need handing over to the patients regular GP, and how this is best communicated. Often the admin staff can guide you as to how to do this such that a message will be picked up quickly.
Communication is key as a locum, not just in terms of looking after your patients, but also for protecting yourself medico-legally. Dr Naeem Nazem from the MDDUS has written an excellent article for our blog highlighting the issues that you might face in particular as a locum. You can read it here.
Back to financials for a second – record your expenses from day 1. It doesn’t matter how you do it, just write them down as you go, before they are forgotten. Again, you can record expenses on your phone, tablet or computer with Locum Organiser. In our blog, Pete Farrier from specialist medical accountants, Morris Crocker, writes about the expenses you can claim as a GP locum, along with other accounting issues you might face.
Finally, take a snack/ lunch with you! Don’t go hungry on the day.
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