GP appointment system doesn’t work

Our local practice has now opted for an appointment system (to see the GP), which sounds wonderful until you wake up one morning, in pain and need of advice.  You reach for the phone (if you are lucky enough to own one) and call the surgery.  You may get through if you hold on the line for long enough, at which point you ask for an appointment with your GP.  Once the chuckles have died down you are told there is nothing free for days on end!

True, if it were an emergency, they may offer another option but when you have been brought up to respect peoples time you tend not to class your illness as an emergency (unless it is clearly life threatening).  So now what do you do?  Well if you are old and fragile, living alone, you will start to worry which makes your illness feel a thousand times worse.

GP Appointment systemYou could go private but this is way beyond your means (and income) so you soldier on the best you can.  When the day of your appointment comes youre too ill to visit the doctor. So what may well have been only a minor illness now becomes a much more serious condition.

But hold on one moment; how much time and money is really being saved here?  Our GPs. don’t appear to work long hours, at least their surgery times don’t suggest this.  Previously their surgeries were packed with patients but now, since some have an appointment system, how many patients do they actually see?

Do many languish at home in need of the help which is now so difficult to find?  More importantly does anyone really care?  Perhaps we could be forgiven for thinking that medication was fast becoming a rich man’s privilege, as for the rest of us what do we do for treatment?

54 Responses

  1. Dead and Buried 29/04/2014 / 5:09 pm

    GP's are utterly useless. They are on huge salaries and yet all they do is TALK.

  2. What are pharmacists for? 29/04/2014 / 1:59 pm

    "You can choose your pharmacist"?

    What's the real truth.

    With the green prescription form signed by my GP I can literally choose any pharmacist in the country I like to fulfill it. Every time I go to a pharmacist nowadays with one of these paper forms they try to force me off this system into a more permanent relationship between my GP and themselves. BAH.

    Why can't the GP themselves issue the top 100 drugs from out of own stocks, in their own surgery? Why am I forced to go to a commercial pharmacist at all for statins, blood pressure pills, and any anti-biotics. BAH!

  3. Anon 23/04/2014 / 10:14 pm

    Repeat Prescriptions – it is not mandatory you register with a pharmacist, it is preferred – the implementation of transmission of electronic prescriptions from your GP to a pharmacist OF YOUR CHOICE is the development driving this, this year. You can choose your pharmacist! This system being implemented means greater integration of clinical and ordering systems / records between primary care and pharmacy suppliers. This can only be a good thing for patients, GPs and pharmacists in co-ordinating care for patients that is becoming increasingly more complex.
    On line access to appointments or prescription ordering – it is not mandatory you use on line services, practices are required to ensure a minimum of 5% + of patients are currently registered to use these services. You can continue to book/ order in the same traditional way.
    GP First – there are practices implementing this system that means patient requests will be managed by a GP calling them assess their needs before booking appropriate appointments for them. Practices have Patient Participation Groups through which patients can feedback back about how services are provided to them, in this case.

  4. anon 22/04/2014 / 2:18 pm

    We have been told by one of the pharmacists that we must now mandatorily register with him for repeat prescriptions. He says "it is a new system". I have tried very hard to find out whether this was a mandatory requirement. I can find nothing about. I think this is now a scam forcing us into a monopolistic arrangement with a given pharmacist. I prefer the competition and the ability and right to choose any pharmacist I have always had

  5. The System Is Utterly Bust 22/04/2014 / 1:35 pm

    We have been told we must register online to book our appointment with our doctor.

    The system we have been given is horrifyingly non-user-friendly.

    We must now remember a 12-digit number as User ID plus a password which must contain two digits. This is all rollocks!! Who dreams up this cr@p.

    Last time we went to our doctor, he told us we had overrun his 10-minute allowance for our appointment. If he was trained properly he would not have taken so long to get at the real issues of our case. Useless overpaid git!

  6. jay 03/01/2014 / 12:55 am

    We have to phone our gp receptionist, tell her what's wrong and then wait for gp
    to call us back. He then makes diagnosis over phone deciding whether to see us! I phoned up with ongoing severe back pain and told I had had it so long would have to live with it. In the end I paid to see a specialist who was brilliant and arranged for an MRI scan in a different area. I now would only bother to call gp if I was desperate.

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