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Our FAQs are listed to assist with any queries you may have.
If you have a question of us that is not shown here, please get in touch and ask directly.
How can I get a referral to Breakspear Medical Group?
Breakspear Medical Group runs a private clinic and that means we are open to everyone. You may request a referral from your GP, from your private physician or simply call and make an appointment directly.
Note: to be considered for NHS funding, you must have the approval and support of your GP.
How much does it cost to be treated at Breakspear Medical?
Each patient has different needs and requires case-specific examinations, tests, treatments and follow-up programmes. (For our latest general price list, see Patient Information.) After your initial consultation, a treatment programme will be drawn up on the patient management sheet and Patient Liaison will then explain the costs involved and your course of action, which will be agreed prior to treatment commencing.
To be considered for NHS funding, you must have the approval and support of your GP. Insurance company funding must be claimed by the patient individually and Breakspear Medical Group will expect payment on receipt of invoice by the patient, regardless of agreement to pay by insurers. For more information, see Patient Information.
I work during the week. Can I receive treatment at the weekend?
Breakspear Medical’s day patient clinic is open 9:00am – 5:00pm Monday to Saturday, excluding public bank holidays.
Consultations with physicians are conducted Monday to Friday and service for allergy treatments and immunisations are performed Monday to Saturday.
Note: some clinical services are limited on Saturdays.
I’ve heard your clinic practices “alternative medicine”. Are your practitioners qualified?
We only employ fully qualified doctors, who are all registered with the General Medical Council (GMC). (See Our People for a biography on each doctor.) All our nurses are registered and have been specially trained in low-dose immunotherapy allergy testing.
The clinic is registered with the Care Quality Commission (registration number: C010000662) which is the health and social care regulator for England. You can visit their website: www.cqc.org.uk to view the latest inspection report.
Can I bring someone with me to my appointment?
Many patients attend with a family member, partner or friend. A lot of information is discussed during the consultation and many patients find it useful to have someone with them who can remind them to ask specific questions or to write down answers for them.
If you want someone to communicate with us about your care on your behalf, your consent must be recorded on our Third Party Consent form.
Please make sure that anyone who attends the clinic with you also adheres to our scent-free policy.
Can I take this drug?
You need to speak to a doctor to determine whether the item is appropriate for you.
Please telephone Reception +44 (0) 1422 261 333 to make or change an in-person or by telephone appointment.
Are my test results positive or negative?
You will need to book an appointment to discuss your results with your doctor.
Please telephone Reception +44(0)1442 261 333 to make or change an appointment.
What does this result mean?
You will need to book an appointment to discuss your results with your doctor. Please telephone Reception +44(0)1442 261 333 to make or change an appointment.
Who should I ask if I have a question while I’m at the clinic?
Our Reception staff are always happy to advise the patients or contact another member of staff to assist as required.
If you are receiving treatment on the Testing Ward, the nursing staff will be able to answer your questions or advise who you need to speak to, depending on the nature of the question.
How do I book an appointment?
To book an appointment, please telephone Reception +44 (0)1442 261 333.
No referral is needed.
What else do the nurses do?
Testing nurses stay with their patients all day for safety reasons and to maximise the testing time and may not have more than 3 patients at a time. The nurses on the infusion team and our phlebotomist also give injections, take blood, and perform ECGs. Nurses are also involved in a range of other treatments that require supervision including Iratherm® far infra red sauna, magnoter therapy and clinical taping. There is also a nurse-led immunisation clinic 1-2 days per week for children and travel immunisations.
How long will treatment for ME/CFS take?
We use a multi-factorial approach, which for ME/CFS patients involves trying to identify causes and then offering treatment. Each patient is recommended a customised testing and treatment programme, which has taken into account their medical history, work and home environment and many other factors. As each patient is different, we are not able to give an estimated time for treatment without an initial consultation with a doctor.
After the initial consultation, all recommendations for investigations and treatment will be provided to you on an estimate with the costs and you will choose with which (if any) you want to proceed. Your Patient Liaison Officer will help you to prioritise your investigations/treatment to suit your budget and timescale.
For more information on the methods we use to treat ME/CFS, visit our Resource section to download a copy of our booklet.
Can you test for Lyme disease?
At your initial consultation, if your doctor feels that you may have Lyme disease, you will be presented with the various options available to test for this condition, together with the costs.
Please visit our Lyme disease webpage for more information about the symptoms and how it can be tested and treated.
How much will it cost to be treated for ME/CFS?
Breakspear Medical treats each patient individually, which means that there is no standard treatment programme for ME/CFS at a set price. After your first appointment, you will be given a detailed estimate, with your personal recommended treatment programme in detail with all the costs, which will be explained to you by your Patient Liaison Officer.
On the day of your appointment or anytime afterward, if you have any specific questions regarding prices, estimates and treatment programmes, you may contact a Patient Liaison Officer, by phone 01442 261 333 ext 604, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you treat children?
Yes. Along with running a childhood vaccine clinic, we treat children of all ages for a wide range of conditions.
On our allergy testing ward, we have child-friendly private rooms, with a television and DVD player, and various toys and books.
Can I bring my carer to my consultation?
Yes, of course. If you cannot care for yourself, please make arrangements for someone to accompany you and ensure that they adhere to our strict scent-free policy, too.
We will try our best to make partners and carers feel welcome and involve them in your care as much as you wish.
We have nurses on site but they are employed to perform other duties and may not be available when you need assistance and we would like you to be as comfortable as possible.
I don’t speak English. Do you have interpreters?
All staff at Breakspear Medical speak English fluently. We may be able to help arrange an interpreter, upon request and for an additional charge, with advance notice. (Note: it is inappropriate for an underage child to translate on behalf of a parent or for fellow, unrelated patients to translate.)
Due to many patients coming from other European countries, we have translated some of our forms into German, Italian, French and Spanish to make it easier. Translations of any documents into languages other than English are intended solely as a convenience to the non-English-readers. If there is any inconsistency or ambiguity between the English version of any documents and any translated version, the English version shall prevail.
Do I need to arrange accommodation?
If you are just coming to Breakspear Medical for your first consultation and no additional treatment, your visit will likely take between 1-3 hours, depending on your condition, symptoms, any tests that may be recommended that you wish to complete and review of your treatment programme and estimate with Patient Liaison, who will answer any of your questions.
However, as Breakspear Medical is a day patient unit, out of town patients receiving treatment over the course of more than a day may wish to stay overnight in the Hemel Hempstead area.
We currently offer two shared apartments for short-term let to patients and their companions (minimum stay of two nights). If there is not a room available for the dates that you wish to have treatment at Breakspear Medical, we can give you the contact details of other local, alternative accommodations, some of which offer a discount to our patients. Bookings are subject to availability and may be booked through Reception +44 (0) 1442 261 333.
Can I bring my child?
Yes, however, any child attending the clinic must be accompanied by a responsible adult at all times.
Our nursing staff are busy working with patients therefore you must be able to look after your child whilst they attend the clinic. You may not leave your child with a nurse.
How can I pay for my appointment?
Located in the office next to Reception, a member of the Accounts team will take payment for your appointment on the day of your visit.
You may pay by cash, Visa, MasterCard or debit card. (Note: we do not accept cheques or American Express.)
If you have any specific questions regarding prices, estimates and treatment programmes, please speak to one of our Patient Liaison Officers in-person or by phone 01442 261 333 Ext 604.
What is the “Load Phenomenon”?
The “Load Phenomenon” is a key concept in understanding allergy and sensitivity. Please visit our webpage dedicated to explaining it.
Can I have the test sent to me at home?
Our Pathology Department staff will be able to tell you if the sample for the test you have been recommended can be completed off site and sent to us for processing.
Some tests can be sent out to you off site and the samples can then be taken while you are not at the clinic. Many tests require that the patient must have the samples taken at the clinic because they have time restricted sample processing requirements and/or are samples that need a medical staff member to collect and process.
If you have any questions, please call the Pathology Department: +44 (0)1442 261 333 Ext 296 during business hours, which are 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday (excluding Bank holidays).
When will I get my results back?
When you have your sample taken, our Pathology Department staff will be able to tell you approximately how long you can expect to wait for results for each test. Processing times vary between a few days and several weeks.
As soon as you can, please book an appointment by contacting Reception +44 (0)1442 261 333 to speak with your doctor for a date shortly after the date when the last of your test results are expected. This will enable your doctor have all your test results at your follow up appointment.
How do I change my appointment?
If you can’t make your appointment for whatever reason, please telephone Reception +44 (0)1442 261 333 to change it as soon as possible.
(We can then make the appointment time available to a patient on the waiting list.)
We reserve the right to charge for missed and cancelled appointments with less than 24 hours’ notice.
I have a question about my estimate. Who do I talk to?
If you have any questions about the items on your estimate before or after you leave the clinic, please contact a member of the Patient Liaison team +44(0)1442 261 333 ext 604.
How will I know which allergens to test?
Every patient has their own individual plan, recommended to them by their doctor. In the majority of patients with allergies/sensitivities, it is important to start with histamine and common foods, which are foods you eat more than three times per week.
A list of over 500 items which we have readily available for testing will be provided for you to choose from. Your doctor may recommend specific items and our testing nurses are all very familiar with common allergens. We are also able to offer custom made items for an additional charge.
There are also seasonal programmes, with specific recommendations.
It is also strongly advised that you have a consultation with a Nutritional Therapist to guide your testing. A Nutritional Therapist will take into account your pathology results and recommendations made by your doctor and can help you make a plan for their recommended supplement regime.
How do I make a complaint about the service I received?
We work towards providing the best service we can and appreciate hearing from our satisfied patients. However, we understand that there may be occasions when the service does not reach the desired standard. In such a situation, we have a complaints procedure. Please visit our Quality of Care page for a full explanation.