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Knowing yourself and your own health and how to access the right information, support or medical help when you need it helps you to stay in control of your health and your life.
The more you can find out and discover about your particular health and wellbeing issues, the better.
Whether it’s a new issue or an existing condition you’re managing, what are you experiencing?
What makes it better? What makes it worse?
This is about listening to your body, listening to your feelings and your instinct. Bear in mind that psychological/emotional issues, such as stress, can cause or exacerbate physical symptoms and vice verse.
If there’s something you’re currently concerned about, try to identify exactly what your concern is and what your immediate needs are, if any, regarding that concern. For example:
‘I have a pain in my knee - I know what’s causing it but need the pain controlled’
is different from
‘I have a pain in my knee - I need to know whether it’s something I should be taking seriously and doing something about’
and is different again from
‘I have a pain in my knee - I have medications to control it but don’t like taking them and would like to know if there’s any alternative’.
Apart from seeking medical advice (see lower down this page), you can find out more by looking up relevant information yourself, either online or through other sources of information; or there may be people with some sort of specialist knowledge you can access, such as a pharmacist for medication issues, or even some amongst your friends or family who may have knowledge or experience they can share.
Some of the options may be medical and some may be more straightforward things you can do yourself. Even chronic pain can often be improved a great deal through making relatively minor changes in daily life. Sometimes quite simple remedies or actions can help, without having to resort to medications. Where these work, they side-step the issue of possible side effects from medication.
Once you consult a doctor, you are probably looking for medical solutions. Sometimes these can fix a problem - or help to fix it - but they can’t always. Even if they help, they can be even more effective when teamed with self-management strategies.
Finding the right help or support isn’t always easy, but it’s much easier if you can work out what sort of support you need before you go looking for it
‘Manage your health’ on this website can help you to see some of the options currently available to you on the NHS.
Choose the most appropriate help for you and make the most of your appointment time with your health professional.
Pharmacists - can help with treatments for a variety of minor ailments and also advise whether you should see a doctor (see What your pharmacist can do for you). You can just call in to any pharmacy and ask to speak to the pharmacist without having to make an appointment.
GP Practices - General practitioners (GPs) treat all common medical conditions and refer patients to hospitals and other medical services for urgent and specialist treatment. They focus on the health of the whole person combining physical, psychological and social aspects of care.
Minor Injuries units - where available, minor injuries units can deal with minor injuries such as sprains and strains, broken bones, wound infections, minor burns and scalds, minor head injuries, insect and animal bits, minor eye injurie and injuries to the back, shoulder and chest. Some minor injuries units don't have the facilities to treat young children so it's worth checking in advance of turning up.
Emergency help - While it’s important not to use emergency services whenever you can avoid it, it’s also very important that you do know when to seek emergency treatment. NHS Choices provides some guidance here.
If you’re still not sure, try to make best use of any available advice and information you can access, including from friends and family or 111 or online - or Walk-in GP surgeries where available (see Emergency and Out of Hours on this website) and listen to your instinct in trying to make the best decision you can in the situation. Are you worrying unnecessarily and can afford to watch and wait or is this a situation that you feel needs urgent attention to avoid serious consequences?
Before you see your GP or other healthcare professional, do you know what sort of help you’re looking for? Is it a diagnosis; treatment; reassurance; problems with existing treatments; alternative treatments; referral to other health services; or monitoring; or something else?
It can help to be clear about what you’d like to come out of the consultation with so that you can be clear what you’re asking for and clear, afterwards, whether you got what you felt you needed – or, if not, whether you’re happy with the result nonetheless.
BE AS HONEST AND OPEN as you can.
There are a number of additional services available through your local NHS, apart from clinical care, such as:
Various support options for a wide range of social needs, many of which are highlighted and can be accessed via the Manage your health pages on this website
2nd Floor, Akerman Health Centre
60 Patmos Road
London SW6 6AF
020 3049 6500
Telephone lines open at 8:00am
117 Norwood Road
London, SE24 9AE
Phone: 020 8678 5400
99 Coldharbour Lane
London, SE5 9NS
Phone: 020 7733 6545
216 Norwood Road
London SE27 9AW
Phone: 0203 049 6370
74 Herne Hill
London SE24 9QO
Phone: 020 7274 3314
West Norwood Health & Leisure Centre
25 Devane Way
London SE27 0DF
Phone: 0203 141 0700
19B Croxted Road
London SE21 8SZ
Phone: 020 8761 8070
Akerman Health Centre
60 Patmos Road
London, SW9 6AF
Telephone: 020 3049 6690
North Wood at Crown Dale
61 Crown Dale
London, SE19 3NY
Phone: 020 8670 2414
North Wood at Tulse Hill
4 Hardel Rise
London SW2 3DX
Phone: 020 8671 3448
Paxton Green Health Centre
1 Alleyn Park
London SE21 8AU
Phone: 020 8670 6878
89 Vassall Road
London, SW9 6NA
Telephone: 020 7793 3100
Telephone lines open at 7:00am
17 Butterfly Walk
London SE5 8RW
020 7708 0907
Monday to Friday: 9:00am-6:30pm, Saturday: 9:00am-6:00pm, Sunday: Closed
8-10 Cromwell Road
London SW9 7BJ
020 7582 4553
Monday to Friday: 9:00am-6:30pm, Saturday: Closed Sunday: Closed
36 Denmark Hill
London SE5 8RZ
020 7 274 5868
Monday to Friday: 9:00am-6:00pm Saturday: Closed Sunday: Closed
182 Coldharbour Lane
London SE5 9QH
020 7274 7599
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 9:00am-6:30pm Thursday: 9:00am-5:30pm Saturday: 9:00am-1:00pm Sunday: Closed
84 Vestry Road
London SE5 8PQ
020 7701 9250
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 9:00am-6:30pm Wednesday: 9:00am-1:30pm Saturday: 9:00am-1:30pm, Sunday: Closed
68 Brixton Road
London SW9 6BH
020 7840 0465
Monday to Friday: 7:00am-11:00pm Saturday: 7:00am-11:00pm Sunday: 1:00pm-5:00pm
100 Coldharbour Lane
London SE5 9PU
020 7274 8807
Monday to Friday: 7:00am-11:00pm, Saturday: 7:00am-11:00pm, Sunday: 1:00pm-5:00pm
52 Vassall Road
London SW9 6HX
020 7582 8904
Monday to Friday: 9:00am-6:00pm, Saturday: Closed Sunday: Closed
102 Loughborough Road
London SW9 7SB
020 7737 2223
Monday to Friday: 9:00am-7:00pm Saturday: Closed Sunday: Closed
9 Brighton Terrace
London SW9 8DJ
020 7787 7040
Monday to Friday: 7:00am-11:00pm Saturday: 7:00am-11:00pm Sunday: 1:00am-5:00pm
290 Brixton Road
London SW9 6AG
020 7274 2673
Monday to Friday: 9:00am-6:30pm, Saturday: 10:00am-6:00pm, Sunday: Closed
26 Clapham Road
London SW9 0JG
020 7735 2730
Monday to Friday: 9:00am-6:30pm Saturday: 9:00am-5:00pm Sunday: Closed
Medical Care when we are closed
Please do not ask to see a doctor out of hours unless you genuinely cannot wait until the surgery re-opens.
Emergency: Dial 999 or go to your nearest A&E Department. Chest pains and / or shortness of breath do constitute an emergency (you must not dial 999 for anything other than an emergency).
Out of Hours Service: If you phone the surgery when we are closed you will be automatically transferred to the out of hours service SELDOC (South East London Doctors on call). Alternatively you can phone SELDOC directly on: 020 8693 9066. You will be given advice, asked to visit the out of hours centre, or be visited by the doctor on call.
NHS Walk In Service: The local NHS walk-in centre also provides healthcare advice, information and treatment with no appointment necessary. The nearest walk-in centre is: The Junction Health Centre, Arches 5-8, Clapham Junction Station, 5-8 Grant Rd, London, SW11 2NU. Telephone: 0333 200 1718.
NHS 111 Service: In the case of urgent need when the practice is closed you can call NHS 111 to speak to a triage nurse. Your needs will be assessed and recieve advice or arrangements will made for you to see a doctor. Please refer to the website for further information www.nhs.uk/111
Non-emergency: Take a look at our "Get health information" page. Alternatively, call 111 for non-urgent medical advice.
Minor Injuries: We do not provide a minor injuries service. You should attend A&E or the local minor injuries unit at Guy's Hospital Urgent Care Centre.
Contact us about this website on 0808 1649158 or send an email to email@example.com