Dr Stephenson & Partners

Appointments can be made either by telephone or by calling in at the reception desk. You can either book an urgent on the day appointment (if available) or go for a pre-bookable appointment.

On line appointments will be available from December 2013.  Please ring Chris Kennedy, Office Manager or Catherine Ferguson, Senior Receptionist at the surgery who will help provide you with the necessary pin number to register for on line appointments: http://www.patient.co.uk/patient-access


We always try to minimise the waiting time for you and, whilst we try to see you at the appointed time, some patients’ appointments may take longer than the time allocated, so please be patient if there is some delay.

We will also try to give you an appointment with the doctor that you prefer, but it may not always be possible. It’s also advisable that you should try to see the same doctor during the course of the same illness.

Please always attend your appointment on time and if you are unable to keep your appointment then please remember to call us as soon as possible. By doing this, you will be helping us to make more appointments available for you and other patients.

Please ask the reception staff for further advice on the appropriate appointment.


WE NOW OFFER EXTENDED HOURS APPOINTMENTS VIA THE SUNDERLAND GP ALLIANCE (All GP Practices in Sunderland are part of this organisation) click on the link below to find out how to access these appointments.  Extended Hours are Mon – Fri 6.00 p.m. to 8.30 p.m., weekends 9.00 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. and Bank Holidays 10.00 a.m. to 2.00 p.m.


SOME TIPS to get the best out of an appointment with your GP?

  • Please switch of your mobile phone or text whilst in consultation
  • Remember that you may be examined and make sure you wear clothes that can be easily removed.  E.G. don’t wear corsets if you have tummy pain
  • Please take outer coat off before going into the consultation.  Take children’s outer clothes off before coming into doctor’s room.  Please try to re-dress children when you return to the waiting room, where possible.
  • If you are asked by the doctor to return, please do so and don’t assume that your test is normal if you do not get recalled – the doctor may be expecting you to come back as instructed
  • If you wish to make an appointment to speed up a hospital appointment, telephone the hospital in first instance or our practice secretary.
  • If you have a list of things to discuss with the GP please mention the most important one first, as a further appointment may be necessary
  • Remember – some doctors are not natural typists! so please be aware that the doctor may need to concentrate on ensuring information on your medical record during your consultation.
  • Your appointment is only for the person whose name is on the appointment book
  • Finally, try telling the doctor what is really worrying you at the beginning of the consultation


We kindly ask that all patients try and stick to one problem per consultation, where possible.  The main reason for this is clinical safety.

 We know that getting an appointment with the doctor is sometimes difficult and that some patients ‘save’ their problems and present them to the doctor at the same time, with or without a list.   We also know that the clinician may run late.   All of this increases the tendency for patients to present multiple problems to their doctor/ANP (advanced nurse practitioner) at one consultation.

 Each appointment is 10 minutes long.   Ten minutes really is not a lot of time, even for just one problem.  E.g. 1 minute to get to the doctor’s room and sit down, 3 minutes to tell a history, 3-4 minutes to perform targeted examination, 2 minutes to explain, advise and treat.   There is no time left of the ten minutes to write up notes, fill out forms, dictate referrals or speak to other team members for advice.

 Presenting the clinician with multiple problems means that there is a real increased risk that mistakes will be made and things may be missed as the clinician may be inclined to rush, particularly if other patients are waiting.

 One of Primary Care’s main purposes is to detect serious disease early.  Presenting multiple problems to the clinician, not all of which may be serious, increases the difficulty of this task – it is like finding the ‘needle in a haystack’.

 Doctors cannot see huge numbers of patients with multiple problems and continue to practise safely and effectively.  A stressed doctor will struggle to be a good safe doctor.

 We do consider that GP appointments are a limited resource and we would kindly ask that such a  service be used with care and consideration.

 Therefore please do not be offended if the doctor asks you to re-book for your other problems.   We are working in your best interests in order to keep you safe.


We do offer double appointments – please ask receptionist or GP, if this is possible



Opening Times
Monday7.20am - 6.00pm
Tuesday7.00am - 6.00pm
Wednesday7.30am - 6.00pm
Thursday7.30am - 6.00pm
Friday7.00am - 6.00pm