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WAITING Times for GP andNurse Appointments

(139 Posts)
Bea65 Tue 31-Aug-21 13:33:58

Sorry have to rant ..almost in tears..went again toGP surgery as couldn't get thru at 8a.m on phone..on going on 2 weeks..so receptionist said no to booking appt with nurse ..said to ring tomorrow at 8a.m. 😖 AAH! but she could book me a prebook telephone triage next Monday😠 i feel like am going insane...

MamaCaz Sat 02-Oct-21 11:25:19

I've only had one face-to-face appt., (13 months ago) and that was with a less experienced doctor who was still checking her decisions with an experienced doctor. I have no complaints about that - it was a same-day appt., resulting in a referral to the breast clinic, where I was seen only two days later (and given the all-clear).

But I think that there are some issues where things do tend to be fast-tracked, and that breast health is one of them. In that sense, I was very lucky.

My OH is pulling his hair out - he can normally only get phone appts., and his hearing is poor so he really struggles to hear what is said, despite hearing aids, unless the person at the other end has a very clear voice. It's far from ideal.

Aveline Sat 02-Oct-21 11:12:05

My GP friend has worked very hard during the pandemic. She's noticed that there are far fewer patients with trivial complaints. Previously, there were patients making appointments for really minor things eg 'my nose is red and sore' from someone with a cold. Others, she felt were attending almost as a social outing. Obviously, loneliness is a major problem and contributor to mental ill health but going to see the nice lady doctor for a wee chat is not ideal.
Clearly I do know what most of you are on about but I do think the old war time slogan, 'Is this trip really necessary?', if adhered to, could free up GP time for more urgent cases.

growstuff Sat 02-Oct-21 10:56:51

Aveline

It doesn't matter what the percentage of GP failed appointments is. At the practice I especially noticed it was 300 opportunities for patients to be seen but who didn't turn up.

I think it does matter what percentage that represents. If it's a big practice and makes thousands of appointments a month, it could only be a fraction of a percent for all I know. There are all sorts of reasons people legitimately miss appointments. For example, there was a message on my mother's phone about a missed appointment. Unfortunately, she had passed away a couple of days previously. As I explained above, I was admonished for missing an appointment I didn't even know about.

Rather than blaming patients, maybe it would be more productive for practices to work with patients to find out what's going wrong.

MerylStreep Sat 02-Oct-21 09:07:39

An interesting question from someone on the news this morning.
If our health service is the best in the world, why has no other country copied it

Mamie Sat 02-Oct-21 08:55:42

I think there is a danger with thinking that the alternative system to the NHS is a system where you pay or go without. I probably thought that when I lived in the UK, but fifteen years of living with a different funding model has made me see that alternatives are possible. We pay a top-up insurance because we can afford it, but you would not be denied treatment if you could not.
We pay it willingly for access to excellent services.

Aveline Sat 02-Oct-21 08:25:16

It doesn't matter what the percentage of GP failed appointments is. At the practice I especially noticed it was 300 opportunities for patients to be seen but who didn't turn up.

MerylStreep Sat 02-Oct-21 07:59:43

This is the man who’s going to shake up the NHS.

usmail24.com/army-general-appointed-to-lead-biggest-shakeup-of-nhs-management-in-40-years/

growstuff Sat 02-Oct-21 07:55:54

The question is why can your practice deliver a good service, but others can't. I can assure you that anything I write about my own practice isn't heavily edited and is definitely real. I don't expect it to be perfect, but I'd like an acceptable service which is something like it was just 10 years ago.

Whiff Sat 02-Oct-21 07:44:11

Feel I need to stick up for GPs . I moved from West Midlands 2 years ago to North west.

The GP practice I chose to join was because the bus stopped opposite and an independent pharmacy was on the other corner who deliver to anyone.

I can not praise my GPs ,nurses plus all the other staff at the practice enough. I have never had a problem getting an appointment or help. It is a very busy practice with a large patient list .

I can get phone or face to face appointments. In fact was there this week for a blood test.

Hospital referrals are sent very quickly. When I asked for a referral to a GP referral exercise class it was soon sent and been going to classes for 8 weeks.

I am 63 and have a neurological condition and heart condition. Under consultants at the hospital.

People here keep on about a TV program about GPs but how much of that is heavily edited and how much is real?

There are a lot of very good GP practices all around the country. I know its annoying if you can't get the help you need when you need it. But where would we be without the NHS.

Also need to praise the A&E department I have had to use their services quite a few times in the last few years. Ok there is a storage of ambulance's but only needed to go via one once. My daughter has taken other times.
Also attend clinic appointments at the hospital.

I know some patients have been let down. But over the decades with various relatives had to use most services hospitals offer so have a wide experience of our health care system.
Like every thing in life it's not perfect but who or what is.

growstuff Sat 02-Oct-21 06:59:54

I think you're absolutely right Mamie. Public Health England was abolished yesterday and a new organisation introduced. I just hope it's not more of the same.

I belong to a local health forum, but it's obvious that nobody really listens to patients' concerns. The kind of issues you've raised have been raised numerous times, but there's a lack of joined-up thinking or willingness to rip up the template and start again. Everybody's reluctant to introduce yet another organisational change, but that's what's really needed - starting with patients rather than profits and so-called management.

Mamie Sat 02-Oct-21 06:25:48

As an outsider looking in it seems to me that the problem is not just with shortages of GPs, but with the chronic and long-term underfunding of all manner of support services. Social services, probation services, adult social care, children's services, local government, mental health services all under stress.
When I watch GPs Behind Closed Doors I am just astonished by how they are picking up the pieces of strain in other parts of the system.

growstuff Fri 01-Oct-21 23:57:22

Saetana

I don't plan to add to the discussion but please read this article written by a trainee GP about the pressures they are under at the moment:

unherd.com/2021/10/the-nhs-is-betraying-doctors/

I have no doubt that GPs are under pressure and I have every sympathy, but I wish people would stop "blaming" patients.

growstuff Fri 01-Oct-21 23:55:25

A couple of years ago, I was told off for not attending an appointment I didn't even know I'd been given, so I've sometimes wonder how these figures are worked out. In my case, it turned out that the results of a blood test meant I needed to see a GP and it had been booked, but nobody remembered to tell me.

growstuff Fri 01-Oct-21 23:52:32

Aveline

I remember being absolutely shocked at the number of failed appointments at the various GP practices where I saw people for assessment. The number used to be put up in reception in each one. At one practice it was more than 300. I don't think GPs can win whatever they do!

What percentage did that represent?

Teacheranne Fri 01-Oct-21 23:35:59

My doctors have gone back to the old system for booking appointments, - phone in the morning for same day emergencies or book regular visits in the next two weeks. It’s much better but the first point of contact with a doctor still tends to be over the phone, not face to face. I don’t actually mind that as I’m sure if necessary I could get one in person.

I’ve had a health issue recently, TIA or mini stroke, spotted by my optician and I have nothing but praise for my doctors practice and the two hospitals I have visited - all within three weeks! The receptionist have been so helpful with sorting out referrals and reassuring me about my different medications and blood tests. I’m now on blood thinners and, from today, statins as my cholesterol levels are a little too high as is my blood pressure. Still got a few more hospital visits to look forward to as I’ve lost some vision in one eye but I’m very happy with the NHS.

Added bonus, the gp I spoke to on the phone had a lovely sexy voice and was so nice that I think I am in love with him!

Aveline Fri 01-Oct-21 22:10:11

I remember being absolutely shocked at the number of failed appointments at the various GP practices where I saw people for assessment. The number used to be put up in reception in each one. At one practice it was more than 300. I don't think GPs can win whatever they do!

Saetana Fri 01-Oct-21 20:40:28

I don't plan to add to the discussion but please read this article written by a trainee GP about the pressures they are under at the moment:

unherd.com/2021/10/the-nhs-is-betraying-doctors/

Bea65 Tue 21-Sep-21 12:19:04

So managed to receive callback from nurse practitioner who was helpful (sort of) but when i asked another ? was informed that a GP would need to answer ..of course asked if i could be transferred..you know the rest of this story....😮its soo bloody frustrating...

MerylStreep Mon 20-Sep-21 14:50:48

I posted on wed 15 that I made a phone call in the morning, saw my Dr at mid day and was sent to the hospital where I was kept in overnight for observation.

To day I’m still no better so my OH went to our Surgery to talk to the receptionist. I have a face to face with my doctor tomorrow morning.
This is a better service than before covid.

chris8888 Mon 20-Sep-21 12:55:27

Same here it is so frustrating, I have managed to get a telephone consultation for next Monday afternoon at some point after 2 pm. Trouble is he won`t be able to tell anything from a phone consultation as its pain in side I am complaining about. So much for all these adverts about getting checked. Rant over, nothing I can do

Zoejory Sun 19-Sep-21 11:37:43

maddyone

Just before I go, a small note of thanks to those few posters who have recognised the work their GPs do, and have been happy with their service, and added it to this thread to counter some of the other nonsense.
I’m off now to finish my packing.

And you're not the only one to have a GP in the family. I have 3. And they managed to stay in the country that paid for their training. It costs a lot more than 9 grand a year, you know

Zoejory Sun 19-Sep-21 11:36:08

growstuff

maddyone

I can’t help but notice that many Gransnetters talk about seeing/not seeing their GP over the last few months or through Covid. I have a number of conditions that are managed by my own GP Practice, but I have only consulted by telephone, about one of these conditions. I also consulted, by telephone, after I was discharged from hospital when I had serious Covid, as I needed ongoing medication for a while. Otherwise I have not consulted my GP and I don’t normally consult with my GP at all during a normal year. So it strikes me that a lot of people are consulting their GP far more often than I do normally, and the verified numbers of consultations across the country over the last year bears this out.
Delia I am not being patronising when I say that if accessing health care is difficult because someone chooses to live in an isolated village, I am merely being practical. It is unfair to complain that medical services are difficult to reach whilst continuing to live far away from medical services. If you do not have a car so that in fact ten miles is not so very far, and you live in a village without services (even a bus service) then that is your choice so you shouldn’t be complaining.

How dare you assume that people who have tried to consult with their GP have done so unnecessarily? Just because your daughter is a GP doesn't mean that you have any medical expertise. Just because people need more consultations than you does not mean that you are in any way the "norm".

BTW I agree with the poster who saw your post as patronising - and ignorant of her situation.

Totally agree with you, growstuff

maddyone, I have seen your comments praising GPs and pointing out the shortage.

You're quite right about the shortage but to suggest people are ringing up unnecessarily is very rude and ignorant.

Sick people are making many phone calls because they're not getting appointments!

To also blame people for living in rural areas ... that would be funny if it wasn't so rude.

You don't know anything about these people you are blaming.

So enough with your comments and stop blaming members of the public who are just attempting to access the health care they are entitled to .

maddyone Sun 19-Sep-21 11:26:17

Just before I go, a small note of thanks to those few posters who have recognised the work their GPs do, and have been happy with their service, and added it to this thread to counter some of the other nonsense.
I’m off now to finish my packing.

maddyone Sun 19-Sep-21 11:23:36

I’ve been accused of being patronising and fixated by other posters, whilst in truth I am neither. It seems to me that in actual fact some other posters are extremely stubborn (fixated) in continuing their view that GPs are mostly hiding behind closed doors, frightened of catching Covid, lazy, not seeing or consulting with patients, and hiding behind their receptionists, not to mention being paid far too much for doing little or no work.
I can’t be bothered to correct these ridiculous views any longer. If that’s what posters think, so be it. Tomorrow I’m going to the Greek Islands on holiday. I’ll leave you at this point to discuss amongst yourselves how dreadful GPs are. Enjoy!

Daisend1 Sat 18-Sep-21 15:06:03

Does anyone like myself IF their GP deems a face to face necessary have to sit in the car park on the day and approximate time of their appointment and wait for another member of staff to fetch you when its your turn to see the GP?. I dread the oncoming winter .