Can I get a fit note without seeing my GP?

It depends on:

  • why you’re off work sick
  • whether your GP wants to see you in person before they issue a fit note
  • if you have been in hospital

"Fit note" is the informal name for the Statement of Fitness for Work. For more information, see What are fit notes?

GP appointments and telephone consultations

Your GP practice will tell you whether you need to see your GP to get a fit note. They will tell you whether you should make an appointment to see your GP or book a phone consultation.

Your fit note will be issued on the day your GP examines you or speaks to you.

If your fit note is issued based on a telephone assessment, you will need to collect it from your GP practice, or you can ask someone else to collect it for you.

If you’ve already seen your GP and need to ask for a fit note more than a day later, they may issue a fit note without seeing you again.

Hospital treatment

If you have been in hospital, a hospital doctor can issue a fit note, as well as a certificate to confirm that you have been an inpatient.

What if I’ve already seen another healthcare professional?

You may already have seen another registered healthcare professional, such as a:

  • nurse
  • physiotherapist
  • occupational therapist

In this case, your GP can base your fit note on a report written by that registered healthcare professional. For example:

  • a hospital discharge summary or hospital letter
  • notes from a previous consultation with another GP at the same practice

Read the answers to more questions about workplace health.

Further information:

Page last reviewed: 30/06/2014

Next review due: 29/09/2016