Request a Fitness for Work Form




How The Fit Note Works

“Doing the right kind of work is good for your health, including if you have a health condition”

You don’t always need to be fully recovered to go back to work, and in fact it can often help your recovery. Your fit note can help you go back to work when you’re able to.

Your doctor will not automatically assess that you are not fit for work if you have a health condition. Instead, they will discuss with you how your health affects what you can do at work.

They will think about your fitness for work in general rather than just your current job.

You should ask your doctor to give you practical advice in the fit note about what you can do at work, rather than simply record your health condition.

You should then discuss this advice with your employer, to see if they can make any changes to help you return to work.


Getting A Fit Note

Your doctor will only give you a fit note if your health affects your fitness for work. The fit note is your property and you should keep it – your employer can take a copy if they want one for their records. We will not be able to provide you copies of your fit note if you lost it.

If you are fit for work, you do not need a fit note.

You also do not need one if you are off sick for seven calendar days or less, because you can self certify your leave for this time.

  • Private fit notes can be issued during this period in certain situations and there will be a cost for this

Your doctor cannot give you a fit note for non-medical problems (such as problems at home or relationship trouble at work). They may, however, be able to suggest other sources of help.

Once you have reached, or in the opinion of your GP, are expected to reach, four weeks of sickness absence, you should then be referred to Occupational health team by your employer or by Job
centre/DWP if you are not employed.

Research shows that work can be good for your physical and mental health, lowers the risk of experiencing financial difficulties, and improves your overall quality of life.

Nurses have to consult with a doctor to recommend a fit note and that would be not more than 1 week at any time.


You Require A Fit Note

Phone Surgery

  • Staff will ask if you have self-certified for first 7 days
  • If not, you will be asked to self-certify in the first instance

Past self-certified period (1week)

  • You will be offered telephone consultation to assess what action is required. You should have had a copy and read "Fit note fact sheet" before this telephone call. You can get a copy from reception or surgery website.
  • GP will book an appointment if needed and assess you further

After 1st Telephone call

  • If you do not require further assessment your fit note will be available to collect after 48 hours
  • Your fit note will be no longer than 2 weeks after which you will be reviewed for further fit note requests

First appointment

  • GP will examine and assess your fitness to work
  • If you are not fit to work, you will receive your 1-2 week fit note with an appointment booked to return to the Fit Note Clinic

Fit Note Clinic Appointment

  • Joint clinician team will discuss with you how your health affects what you can do at work and a joint careplan will be agreed at this point. A signed copy of this care plan will be provided to you
  • This clinic is designed by Practice to support you in your return to work
  • You are allowed to attend with a friend/relative.

Further Appointments

  • Future appointments will be booked as required and agreed in the careplan 

Please note that we do not issue backdated sick notes for any illness except in exceptional circumstances.
If you have been assessed by DWP as fit to work we will no longer issue a sick note in line with their recommendation.
Please adhere to the agreed care plan in the Fit Note.


Apply for a Fit Note Online