- Referrals to Rethink Menopause
- Private Health Insurance
- The Appointment Process
- Following a consultation
- HRT prescriptions
- Hormone Blood Tests
I consult with women and female bodied individuals who are over the age of 18 and live in the UK.
I am regulated by CQC, and follow their guidance by checking your photographic ID (passport or drivers licence) at our appointments.
I use an approved secure patient managing system, Semble, to store all medical information.
Referrals to Rethink Menopause
You can self refer to this clinic, a GP referral letter is not required. If you have any relevant letters about your medical history, or test results you can upload them to your Rethink record. NHS results can be accessed via the NHS app, you can ask your GP admin team to enable the detailed view for you to see your own test results.
Private health insurance
As menopause is a natural process and not an illness or disease, menopause care is not usually covered by private health insurance.
The appointment process
A secure pre-appointment questionnaire will be emailed to you at the time of booking for you to complete prior to our appointment. This asks about your medical history, medication and allergies, aswell as your family history. It means I am in the picture about your health when we meet. It includes a request for an up to date blood pressure measurement. If you don’t have a blood pressure machine at home you can usually go along to a local pharmacy for a check.
If you have been using a menopause symptom tracker you can upload it to your Rethink record. They can be really helpful for some women but there is no obligation to complete one.
Your appointment can be used for whatever is most helpful for you. To understand what is happening, to ask questions about treatment options, to explore lifestyle, to agree on a personalised approach to support your wellbeing with HRT and/or non-hormonal treatments.
Following a consultation
I will write to both you and your GP within a week of the consultation, usually within 24 hours. This will be sent by secure email, with your permission, and will outline our discussion and any treatment plans we have agreed on. It is important for your GP to have a complete record of any medical care and medication you are receiving.
I will email you after a month, to check in. If you need to email me before that please do so, I will reply within 1 week.
The follow-up appointment is a chance to review how things are going, and make any adjustments to fine tune our approach. We can review the results of any tests or monitoring you have undertaken. Many women will choose to then follow-up with their GP or practice nurse for an annual follow-up, returning to Rethink for a specialist review if things change. You are of course very welcome to return to Rethink for all of your reviews.
I can issue private HRT prescriptions including for testosterone, vaginal treatments and contraception, with advice on prices and current availability. Your medicines will be delivered to you the next day. I’m not able to issue NHS prescriptions.
I only prescribe evidence based, regulated medicines that are endorsed by the BMS. I do not prescribe compounded HRT.
Review appointments occur at 3 months. Following this, repeat HRT prescriptions can be offered up until 12 months, when the annual review is undertaken. This is in accordance with national guidelines on safe prescribing.
GPs are not obliged to give NHS prescriptions following private consultations. Many GPs will be happy to continue a prescription for HRT but this prescribing is at their discretion and subject to their local policies and guidelines. Testosterone prescribing in Bristol is subject to local prescribing formulary decisions.
Hormone blood tests
Blood tests are sometimes essential, for example if our menopause starts at an early age or to monitor testosterone prescribing. Hormone blood tests can help assess whether we are absorbing HRT sprays, patches and gels. They can also be useful to assess some symptoms which may have a number of possible causes. I am happy to help you interpret the results of hormone blood tests you have already had. GP surgeries are not obliged to take blood tests for you following a private consultation.
Blood tests for testosterone monitoring in Bristol will usually need to be carried out on a private basis. Private blood tests can be arranged by Rethink via nationwide pathology. Hormone blood tests for testosterone monitoring are usually under £100. Blood tests can be done at clinics in Bristol and throughout the UK and sometimes arranged at your home or workplace. The results are sent securely through to Rethink and Sam will let you know when she has them.