Fit notes and proof of sickness
Employees must give their employer a doctor’s ‘fit note’ (formerly ‘sick note’) if they’re off sick for more than 7 days. Hospital doctors or GPs provide them. They can charge a fee if a fit note is asked for before the 7th day.
The fit note will say the employee is either ‘not fit for work’ or ‘may be fit for work’.
If it says the employee ‘may be fit for work’, employers should discuss any changes that might help the employee return to work (eg different hours or tasks). The employee must be treated as ‘not fit for work’ if there’s no agreement on these changes.
Employers can take a copy of the fit note, the employee should keep the original.
Employers can also ask employees to fill in a form when they return to work to confirm they’ve been off sick for up to 7 days. This is called ‘self-certification’. Employers usually provide their own version of this form.
Patients being referred to hospital have a right to choose their hospital.
Forms and letters
Private health insurance claim forms, insurance certificates for continued sickness and travel insurance claim forms can be dealt with at the surgery. Please ask for advice from reception if you have a form that you think the doctor needs to fill in. You may be asked to leave it at reception and collect it at a later date.
A charge will be made for forms that are not covered by the NHS (see list of charges at reception). Please do not ask a doctor to fill in a form or write a letter during surgery as this causes delays for other patients.
Letters regarding housing will not be written except at the formal request of the housing department or housing association. The practice does not countersign passport forms.