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Sick Notes, Fit Notes and Self-Certification

A fit note is a letter from a Doctor, usually your GP, telling your employer you are not currently able to work due to your health. The technical terms for a fit note is a Statement of Fitness for Work, but you will also hear them referred to as Doctor’s notes, medical statements or, most commonly, sick notes. There is no charge to patients for requesting a fit note. However, in some circumstances where an employer asks for medical records to support repeated medical absences, this may need a private medical certificate that may have to be paid for.

When you are ill for seven days or fewer

Your employer should not ask you for a fit note if you are well enough to return to work in seven days or fewer. You should count the seven days consecutively, not just weekdays or days you usually work. Instead, your employer may ask you to fill in a self-certification. Most workplaces will have their own forms for this.

Absences of more than seven days

In situations where you do not think you will be able to return to work after more than seven days, you will need a fit note from your GP or a hospital Doctor if you are receiving treatment there. The note will tell your employer that you are not fit for work or that you may be able to return with some adjustments from your employer. Adjustments might include a temporary change or responsibilities or a gradual return to work with reduced hours. Fit notes need to be signed by a Doctor. You may not always need to see them in person – a telephone appointment or online consultation may be enough, depending on individual circumstances. You can go back to work before the end of the fit note period if you want to. If you still don’t feel ready when the note expires, you will need to contact your GP again to get a new one.

Submit an Accurx

You can request a sick note through Accurx via this link Select the option for ‘Sick notes, test results or administrative help’ Please allow 2 working days for a response to your Accurx.

Speak with a Care Navigator

Alternatively, you can call us on 0191 2755740 and press option 2 or come into either our Molineux Street or Shieldfield surgery and speak with a Care Navigator. Our Care Navigators will ask some questions regarding your sick note request, such as your occupation, the date you require your sick note to start, how long you need it for and for what reason. Your sick note can either be collected from one of our receptions at Molineux Street or Shieldfield, or it can be sent via text, email or posted.

More Information

Please be aware that we are unable post date a sick note for a date in the future, however can back date them for a date in the past. If you request a sick note too early, or for a date in the future, we can not process this. If you are requesting for a sick note in regards to a new health issue, which hasn’t yet been discussed with the surgery, or with another professional body (such as the walk in centre or A&E), we may not be able to issue a sick note until you have had an appointment. If you require an extension to your existing fit note, please request for this via the channels mentioned above.