A fit note must be signed by a doctor, but you do not always need to see a GP in person to get one.
It depends on:
- why you're off work sick
- whether a GP needs to assess you face to face
- if you have been in hospital
"Fit note" is the informal name for a Statement of Fitness for Work. Find out more about when you need a fit note.
Important: Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice
Do not ask your GP for a fit note if you are off work because of COVID-19. Instead you can get an isolation note to send to your employer as proof you need to stay at home.
GP appointments and telephone consultations
If you need a fit note, contact your GP practice. They will tell you whether you should make an appointment to see a GP or book a phone consultation.
A GP can give you a fit note on the day they assess you or at any time after the assessment.
If you have been in hospital, a hospital doctor can give you 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:
- occupational therapist
In this case, a 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
Page last reviewed: 17 October 2019
Next review due: 17 October 2022