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Do I need a referral from my GP for private treatment?

Guide to going private - gp

There are very few private GPs in the UK (See our list of private GPs). So, when you decide to go private, whether you have private health insurance or not, your first step is normally to see your NHS GP. Your NHS GP wiill write the referral letter for your appointment with a private doctor or specialist (See the section on private specialists).


Most private doctors, consultants and specialists will not see a patient unless there is a referral letter from the patient's GP. There are some exceptions to this. For example, physiotherapy, health screening, and cosmetic surgery and dentistry. 


If you do not have a GP, your local private hospital (Search for a private hospital) may arrange for an appointment for you with a private GP in their outpatient department.


Once you have seen the GP, he/she will recommend an appropriate specialist.  Or you can tell the GP which specialist you would like to see (Search for a private specialist)..

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We will forward your request for further information, a quotation or an indicative cost for private hospital treatment to three providers of private healthcare services in your local area.

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If you're looking for private treatment, you can search our database of hospitals and clinics.

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