Island Medical centre is pleased to announce that from Monday 2nd February 2015, routine consultations for children under the age of 16 will be FREE OF CHARGE to patients.
All of the team here at Island Medical Centre take great pride in providing high quality healthcare to families and we do not want the cost of a consultation to be a factor when our parents decide whether or not to take their unwell child to see a GP. That is why we are making this important and significant change.
For some time there has been awareness in medico-political circles in Jersey that affordable access to Primary Care for children is a concern. It was highlighted in the White Paper on Health and also in a wide-ranging consumer council survey regarding sustainable primary care, which we have been studying. In a winter season that appears to have delivered a greater than average surge in virus activity and in these tight financial times, this has emerged as a priority.
Our colleagues in the A&E Department at the General Hospital tell us they are seeing many children from families often because they are unable to afford to see their family doctor.
The A&E department, although excellent, may not be the ideal setting in which to see children, unless it is for a genuine life-threatening emergency.
As children become young adults, additional support is often needed. It is important that our teenagers have no barriers to seeing their GP for their changing needs, which is another reason why we have extended no routine consultations fees, all the way to the age of 16.
This concession will apply at all four practice locations from today, Monday 2nd February 2015. Free consultations will be provided during normal surgery hours, where your child has a valid health card and where at least one parent or legal guardian is registered with the practice. Some additional services beyond a standard consultation may, however, continue to attract a fee. A fee will also be charged for home visits and out-of-hours consultations.
We wish to assure our patients that we will endeavour to maintain ample capacity to meet the demand for prompt access to GP appointments at all times.