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GP Referral Letter for Specialist Care

Required to access private specialist care.

✓ No appointment required
✓ Upload video evidence
✓ Do it without leaving your home
✓ Signed by a fully registered experienced GP
✓ Sent straight to your inbox

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Receive a full refund if we can’t provide a certificate

Specialist Referral Letter

If you have a health concern and would like to access private specialist care, you may require a GP referral letter .

Our GPs can provide you with a GP referral letter that will detail your medical condition and symptoms, as well as the reason why you need to seek specialist care.

Receive your referral letter same day or overnight, straight to your inbox.

Skip the hassle of appointments – consult online now.

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How it Works

01

Complete an online consultation form

No appointment required – simply complete a short medical consultation form and upload a video describing your symptoms or concerns, and why you feel you need to see a specialist.

02

Doctor Reviews Consultation

One of our FCDO and GMC registered GPs will review and validate the submitted information and medical evidence. They'll start preparing your referral letter - or in the rare instance we aren't able to issue one, you'll get a full refund.

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03

Receive your Referral Letter

Receive your referral letter as soon as same day or by 9 a.m. next-day, straight to your inbox. You'll receive a PDF of the GP referral letter that you can instantly share or print as needed.


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What will you receive?

You will obtain a verifiable digital PDF certificate bearing the signature of a registered GP, sent directly to your mobile device. This document will include the following information:

✓ Your name and date of birth.
✓ Details of your symptoms or medical condition, including the date of onset.
✓ How the symptoms affect you and what you are concerned about.
✓ The private specialist you would like to see and how soon you should be seen
✓ Signed and authorised by one of our General Medical Council (GMC) registered UK GPs.
✓ Contact information for Medical Cert and QR verification code.

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PRICING

STANDARD

£35

 1-2 day delivery.

 Delivered to your inbox.

 Signed by a fully registered GP.

EXPRESS DELIVERY

£39

 ✅ Next day delivery before 9AM.

 ✅ Delivered to your inbox.

 ✅ Signed by a fully registered GP.

FREQUENTLY

Asked Questions

How do I get an urgent medical letter or certificate?

It’s quick and easy! Simply complete the brief online questionnaire and complete the payment. After purchasing your medical letter online, a doctor will review the medical evidence the same day and we will provide you with your unique medical certificate for you to present to your work place or institution. There is no need to have a telemedicine or online consultation to receive a medical letter. Our Doctors may call or email you directly if they have any additional questions.

Can I get a referral letter without seeing a doctor?

All referral letters must be signed and certified by a GP, but you do not always need to see a GP face to face to get one. Our revolutionary service allows you to be assessed by one of our GPs without needing an appointment, simply by uploading your concerns and evidence through our forms. One of our GPs will then consider your medical history, current symptoms, and any potential risks associated with your condition and work or study environment before issuing your medical certificate. You will then receive the letter directly to your inbox.

What medical evidence will you require?

We will require you to upload:
✓ A photo / copy of your Passport or driver’s licence to confirm your identity
✓ Complete a short medical questionnaire
✓ Upload a short video or photographs via your mobile confirming your symptoms and reason for a medical letter

Do you provide refunds?

We always provide full refunds if we are unable to provide a Medical Letter in your situation, so you can submit your requests with peace of mind. Once a medical certificate or sick note has been issued we are unable to offer refunds.

How soon will I receive my medical letter or certificate?

Our team of GPs will review your medical evidence and questionnaire on the same day and provide you with your medical letter or certificate within 1 working day. We also offer a guaranteed by 9 a.m. service for medical letters for evidence that has been uploaded by 11 p.m. (UTC/GMT) Sunday - Thursday. With our express overnight service you will receive your medical letter or certificate in your inbox overnight by 9 a.m. the next day. For example, an application submitted at 11 p.m. on a Thursday night will be assessed and delivered by 9 a.m. on Friday morning.

Who will sign my Medical Letters and medical certificates?

All of the doctors at Medical Cert are fully licensed GMC-registered GPs, unlike many other services who use very junior non-specialist doctors, which may sometimes cause their letters to be rejected. You can submit any letters you receive from Medical Cert with full confidence, knowing that an experienced GP has signed your document. We are a UK based healthcare service but the certificates can be used internationally. All of our Doctors are registered GPs with the UK General Medical Council.

Can you complete a specific form required by insurance company?

Yes, in most cases we can help with special forms required by your medical insurance. Simply upload the required form with your medical evidence. Depending on the nature of the form and the time required to complete it, there may be a further charge.

Can your doctor’s letters be verified by my workplace or institution?

Absolutely. Each letter or certificate issued will have a unique reference number and a QR code for verificaion. Our letters can also be verified free of charge by emailing us at verify@medicalcert.co.uk.

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About Us

Medical Cert

  • Medical Cert is powered by experienced general practitioners providing quick & hassle-free GP certification services

    All of our doctors are licensed GPs who hold full registration with the UK General Medical Council and have extensive experience in providing high quality clinical care in various NHS and private settings. All of our doctors are registered with the FCDO and authorised to issue visa medicals.

How we're different

Medical Cert takes a modern approach to digital healthcare

Our platform offers quicker access to health certification while alleviating strain on the NHS. Our dedicated team of doctors is ready to assist without the need for appointments, day and night.
Our doctors are all NHS-trained and registered with the General Medical Council as well as the FCDO, and fully authorised to issue medical letters. In the rare event that our doctors cannot provide a certificate or letter for your situation, a full refund is guaranteed.

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LEARN MORE

Online Referral Letters

Still confused about how to get a specialist referral letter from a GP? Keep reading to learn who needs a referral letter to access specialist care, and how to get one online from a GP.

How to Obtain a GP Referral Letter for Specialist Care

If you need to see a specialist for your health, the first step is often getting a letter from your GP. A referral letter is key, ensuring that your medical concern has been reviewed by a GP and deemed suitable for specialist review.

Sometimes, GPs can provide treatments or basic investigations for many medical concerns before a specialist review is required. Therefore, insurance companies may insist on a referral letter from a GP to ensure that your concern or condition is appropriate for a private specialist referral.  

This article shows you how to get that all-important GP referral letter, ensuring a smooth journey towards private specialist care

Key Takeaways

  • If you need specialist care, first visit your General Practitioner, who will assess if a referral is needed.
  • The GP writes a referral letter detailing your medical history and the specific help you need from a specialist.
  • If you request a specialist review on the NHS, the ‘Choose and Book’ system will allow you to select where and when to be referred to a specialist.
  • A GP referral letter includes essential personal details, health problems, past medical history, and current medication.
  • After getting referred to the NHS, there might be some waiting time for an appointment, but urgent cases get priority.
  • If you are referred to a private specialist, you are often seen much quicker, sometimes as soon as the same or the next day.
  • Medical Cert GP referral letters can help facilitate this referral to private specialists. Get started HERE.

Understanding GP to Specialist Referral

What is a GP referral?

A GP referral is a note from your doctor to a specialist. It tells the specialist about your health and what problems you have. This helps them understand what medical problem you need help with and care for you better. A GP consultation before a specialist referral is essential to ensure you are seen by the correct specialist.

Once a GP has reviewed your situation and medical concern, they will write a specialist referral letter detailing the problem and the desired outcome of the referral.

This letter connects primary care, like your usual doctor visits, with secondary care, which includes experts and specialists in hospitals. Specialists read these letters to understand your case quickly and decide how urgent it is.

If the letter has all the needed details, you get faster treatment, as it avoids to-and-fro delays. Now, let’s look into why getting a GP referral matters in healthcare.

Importance of a GP referral

A GP referral is crucial for getting the right specialist care. It acts as a bridge between you and secondary healthcare services. This letter from your general practitioner outlines your medical history, symptoms, test results, and treatment so far.

It helps specialists understand your health issue immediately. They use this information to decide the best way to help you.

This referral also makes sure that NHS resources are used wisely. Without it, patients might see specialists they don’t need, which can waste time and resources. The NHS “Choose and Book” system lets patients pick their hospital or clinic and book an appointment quickly online or over the phone using the referral details from their GP.

This process ensures that patient care is efficient and centred around their needs.

For those with private healthcare, medical insurance providers will usually still insist on a GP referral letter to see a specialist, as this ensures your problem has been appropriately vetted and that you will be seen by the right specialist.

The Process of GP Referral

When your GP refers you, they’ll send a letter to the specialist. This letter will outline details about your condition and medical history.

How is a GP referral made?

To get a GP referral, you first see your General Practitioner if you have health concerns. During the appointment, the GP checks your symptoms and decides if specialist care is needed.

They consider your medical history, any recent tests, and the urgency of your case. If they think a specialist should see you, they write a referral letter. This letter tells the specialist about your condition in detail.

In the private sector, a GP referral letter is usually given straight to the patient so that the patient can submit it either to their medical insurance provider or directly to the specialist.

How to see a specialist with Bupa Health Insurance with the help of Medical Cert

To see a specialist with Bupa health insurance, patients typically need a referral letter from their GP. This letter outlines the medical condition and the necessity for specialist care. Once received, patients can contact Bupa to arrange an appointment with a specialist. Bupa offers a network of approved specialists, ensuring high-quality care.

In some cases, Bupa may also provide direct access to certain specialists without a GP referral, depending on the patient’s policy and the nature of the condition. However, patients should check their policy details and contact Bupa for clarification.

  • Step 1: Complete the GP to Specialist referral consultation form online. The form will ask you to provide the details of your medical condition or concern and the desired outcome of your referral. For example, do you have a new medical concern that you would like further tests or a diagnosis for? Or do you have a long-standing medical condition that you would like a second opinion for? 
  • Step 2: Once the referral consultation form is submitted, our GPs will be on the case. They will review your submission, and if all is clear, issue your referral letter straight away. If they have any further questions, they may call or email you for clarification.
  • Step 3: Once you have the referral letter, contact Bupa to arrange an appointment with a specialist.
  • Step 4: Bupa will guide you through the process and help you find a specialist within their network.
  • Step 5: Attend your appointment with the specialist for further assessment and treatment.

How to see a specialist with Axa Health Insurance with the help of Medical Cert

AXA PPP Healthcare usually requires patients to obtain a referral letter from their GP before seeing a specialist. This letter provides important information about the patient’s condition and medical history, aiding the specialist in providing appropriate care.

Once the referral is obtained, patients can contact AXA to arrange an appointment with a specialist from their network of approved healthcare providers. While AXA may offer direct access to some specialists depending on the policy, it’s recommended that patients consult their policy documents or contact AXA directly to understand their specific coverage and requirements.

  • Step 1: Complete the GP to Specialist referral consultation form online. The form will ask you to provide the details of your medical condition or concern and the desired outcome of your referral. For example, do you have a new medical concern that you would like further tests or a diagnosis for? Or do you have a long-standing medical condition that you would like a second opinion for? 
  • Step 2: Once the referral consultation form is submitted, our GPs will be on the case. They will review your submission, and if all is clear, issue your referral letter immediately. If they have any further questions, they may call or email you for clarification.
  • Step 3: Once you have the referral letter, contact AXA to arrange an appointment with a specialist.
  • Step 4: AXA will assist you in finding a specialist from their approved network.
  • Step 5: Attend your appointment with the specialist for evaluation and any necessary treatment.

How to see a specialist with Aviva Health Insurance with the help of Medical Cert

Aviva health insurance typically requires patients to obtain a referral letter from their GP before seeking specialist care. This referral letter outlines the patient’s medical condition and the need for specialist consultation or treatment. Once the referral is obtained, patients can contact Aviva to arrange an appointment with a specialist from their network.

Aviva offers access to a wide range of specialists, ensuring comprehensive care. While some policies may allow direct access to certain specialists, patients should review their policy details or contact Aviva for clarification and guidance.

  • Step 1: Complete the GP to Specialist referral consultation form online. The form will ask you to provide the details of your medical condition or concern and the desired outcome of your referral. For example, do you have a new medical concern that you would like further tests or a diagnosis for? Or do you have a long-standing medical condition that you would like a second opinion for? 
  • Step 2: Once the referral consultation form is submitted, our GPs will be on the case. They will review your submission, and if all is clear, issue your referral letter straight away. If they have any further questions, they may call or email you for clarification.
  • Step 3: Contact Aviva and inform them of your referral and need to see a specialist.
  • Step 4: Aviva will assist you in scheduling an appointment with a specialist from their network.
  • Step 5: Attend your appointment with the specialist for assessment and potential treatment.

How to see a specialist with Vitality Health Insurance with the help of Medical Cert

Patients with VitalityHealth insurance usually need a referral letter from their GP to access specialist care. This letter provides essential information about the patient’s health condition, aiding the specialist in delivering appropriate treatment. Once the referral is obtained, patients can contact VitalityHealth to arrange an appointment with a specialist from their network.

VitalityHealth emphasises preventive healthcare and may offer incentives for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. While direct access to certain specialists may be available depending on the policy, patients are advised to review their coverage and consult VitalityHealth for specific details and assistance.

  • Step 1: Complete the GP to Specialist referral consultation form online. The form will ask you to provide the details of your medical condition or concern and the desired outcome of your referral. For example, do you have a new medical concern that you would like further tests or a diagnosis for? Or do you have a long-standing medical condition that you would like a second opinion for? 
  • Step 2: Once the referral consultation form is submitted, our GPs will be on the case. They will review your submission, and if all is clear, issue your referral letter straight away. If they have any further questions, they may call or email you for clarification.
  • Step 3: Once you have the referral letter, contact Vitality Health to arrange an appointment with a specialist.
  • Step 4: Vitality Health will guide you in finding a specialist within their network.
  • Step 5: Attend your appointment with the specialist for further evaluation and any necessary care.

Details Included in a GP Referral Letter

A GP referral letter includes personal information, medical history, current medication details, reason for referral and the desired outcome. It also specifies the urgency of the referral and contains details about the condition being referred for.

Personal information

Your GP referral letter needs some key personal details. It should have your full name, date of birth, sex, gender, ethnicity, NHS number, and address. Your letter also needs your contact information, such as phone number and email.

Registered GP Details

A GP referral letter must have details about your general practitioner. This includes the doctor’s name, where their office is, and the postal code. It should also list their GP identifier, phone number, and email address if they have one.

These details help ensure that your GP is aware of any investigations, treatment, and medical care you receive from private specialists.

Next, we discuss “The Condition.” This part of the letter describes the health issue for which you are seeing a specialist.

The Condition or Concern

Once the GP has your details, they focus on the specifics of your illness. They describe where it hurts or bothers you, how long you’ve had this trouble, and what kind of concern you have regarding it.

The letter also talks about any other symptoms that you describe. For example, if moving around is hard or if you get tired easily. It includes other medical details such as allergies to medicine and any previous procedures or investigations.

Doctors also look at risks linked to your health problem. If smoking, alcohol use, or weight issues make things worse, they write this down too. This helps the specialist understand your situation better before you even meet them.

It’s all about getting a clear picture of what’s going on with your health.

Medical History

Your GP needs to know your past medical history before writing a referral letter. This includes any major sicknesses or diagnoses you have had. They should also know about problems that run in your family.

Also, let your doctor know if you’ve had reactions to medicines or treatments before. If you’ve been treated for your existing medical conditions, this is key information for your medical history section.

Next, the GP adds details about the current and recent medication you’re taking.

Current and Recent Medication

When a GP referral is made, it includes the list of medications currently prescribed and those recently discontinued. This information is crucial for the specialist to understand the patient’s medical history and what may have already been tried for your problem. It is also important for doctors to be aware of any medications you use that are purchased over the counter. 

Reason for referral

The reason for referral is crucial in clearly stating why the patient needs secondary care and the expected outcome. It should be specific and detail any relevant risk factors associated with developing a medical condition.

Calculated assessment scales can be included if applicable to support this information, ensuring a comprehensive understanding of the patient’s situation and needs. In doing so, the referral letter effectively communicates the necessity of specialist care for the patient’s well-being and recovery.

Following this important step of outlining reasons for referrals, it’s essential to understand how a GP makes a referral and incorporates calculated assessment scales when necessary to reach an accurate diagnosis.

Urgency of Referral

The urgency of the patient’s condition is crucial in a referral letter for specialist prioritisation and timely treatment. This helps prevent delays in care and ensures that patients with more urgent needs are seen promptly.

It also underpins the suspected cancer referral pathway, where urgent referrals can significantly impact outcomes. In the NHS, suspected cancer is referred via the two-week-wait pathway, which aims to have you seen by a specialist or receive specialist investigations within two weeks.

However, due to the current pressures faced by the NHS this target is not always met. Follow-up after referral is essential to ensure compliance with the two-week referral period for suspected cancer cases, emphasising how time-sensitive these referrals are.

If you have private medical insurance, it is often preferable to be referred privately, as you are more likely to be seen immediately. Private referrals for suspected cancer are treated with the highest priority, and patients are often offered appointments the same day or the next day. Medical Cert can aid in these urgent referrals, and we pride ourselves on our rapid overnight turnaround for referral letters.

After the Referral: What to Expect

After the referral, you will be offered a date and time for an appointment and information about what happens after seeing the specialist.

Waiting time for an appointment

In the NHS, the waiting time for an appointment aims not to surpass 18 weeks for the first outpatient visit, one month after a cancer diagnosis, and six months for inpatient treatment. After the referral, patients can contact the hospital’s outpatient department to inquire about the expected wait time.

In the private sector, patients are usually seen far quicker and followed up quicker after initial consultation.

What happens after the consultant appointment

After the consultant appointment, the patient may undergo further tests or procedures based on the consultant’s decision. The treatment plan and next steps will be discussed, and a follow-up appointment might be scheduled.

The consultant will share feedback with your registered GP regarding their recommendations for ongoing care.

Conclusion

Understanding the process of obtaining a GP referral letter for specialist care is crucial in making sure you are seen promptly. A well-documented referral provides vital patient information to ensure seamless transition and follow-up care.

Remember to provide as much detailed information as possible in your consultation form and about your healthcare needs so there is no delay and the reviewing GP can facilitate an effective referral process.

FAQs

1. What is a GP referral letter for specialist care?

A GP referral letter is a document a general practitioner (GP) gives you to see a medical specialist. It includes your medical history and the reason for seeing the specialist.

2. Why do I need a GP referral to see a specialist?

You need a GP referral because specialists require detailed information about your health from your doctor, like vital signs or symptoms of diseases, before they can give you proper care. Health insurance providers will also often require a referral letter from a GP before booking with an approved specialist.

3. How do I get a GP referral letter?

Complete the referral consultation form HERE. Based on their diagnosis, one of our GPs will write you a referral.

4. Can I use my private medical insurance with the referral?

Yes! At the specialist’s office, show both your private medical insurance details and the GP’s referral letter to cover some costs of outpatient clinics or treatments not available in general practice.

5. What if it’s an emergency and I can’t get a referral first?

In emergencies like severe epigastric pain or signs of pulmonary embolism, go straight to the emergency department, where doctors can treat urgent conditions without first needing a GP’s letter.