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Sali

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Sali last won the day on May 9 2013

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  1. The USA (and other countries) spend more of their GDP on healthcare than the UK. Who wants a system like theirs? I'd like to know where the cash is being spent and practical and imaginative ways to save money, rather than just throwing more and more money at the problem. Missmermaid, as far as your letter is concerned, yes, send one to the practice. However, unless all the staff are sneaking in the back door like rock stars, they are fully aware of what is happening. I'd involve the local MP and newspaper too. You are in the trade TAI. Would you just step over the bodies or would you think of ways to resolve the problem? Say it was your mum or your nana stuck out in the rain? Would you not spend some time finding out why these people feel they have to wait outside before the surgery opens? Cannot get through on the 'phone, the telephone numbers are premium rate, have no access to the internet or don't know how to use it? The 'cake' has always been too small, but I would expect those in certain positions to at least look at ways of ensuring everyone has equal access.
  2. Yes, I can see why mothers would want to save cash. I'm still not convinced that the first hour would not work well as a walk-in in some circumstances. My GP practice has 13 doctors, so a few could carry on with the standard appointment system. I'm a rare visitor to my GP, but I have suffered the torture of the eternally engaged tone when trying to ring for an appointment. If there was an option for a walk-in with the understanding that I may not be seen, but would be able to make a later appointment at the desk or try my luck another day, I'd take it. What's important is setting the patient expectation and giving them options. This is not doing away with the appointment system - it would still operate as normal the rest of the day - it's modifying it to suit the patient need.
  3. I've seen a chart (Health and Social Care Information Centre) which shows that, in England at least, (full-time) GP numbers increased year on year from 2004-2009, fell very slightly in the next 3 years, but has since returned to 2009 levels. However, the number of GPs per 100,000 population is lower than 2009. The population is growing faster than the number of GPs. Probably faster than any other country in the EU. All other countries in the UK spend more per head on health than England. Although Wales has shown the greatest decrease over the years, it's still higher than England. Health spending, however, continues to grow. So more money, just less to go around. I thought Mariner51's suggestion of the first hour being a walk-in surgery was a good one. Can anyone suggest why this would not work? Those that couldn't be seen, could queue up at the desk to make a 'proper' appointment or take their chances the next day. Only one question remains, do you get many people with lice in your surgery TAI?
  4. This is a Pulse article on Vit D from 2013. http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/clinical/more-clinical-areas/musculoskeletal/vitamin-d-testing-guidance-to-prompt-sea-change-for-gps/1/20002686.article?PageNo=2&SortOrder=dateadded&PageSize=10#comments
  5. And they monitor the levels through blood tests?
  6. Bazzas, I didn't think you were disagreeing with me and I wouldn't have any issue if you did. Absolutely, I would not want any person having to make a choice between food or pain-relief. It is only the English who still have to pay for prescriptions. I'm guessing (and only guessing) that the OP may have a vitamin D deficiency. GPs will test for vitamin D (which is, as you know, really a hormone) in some cases and not necessarily on the patient's instigation and may suggest the patient purchase their own supplements if found to be deficient (according to the current guidelines) - unless, of course, they are quite obviously suffering from rickets. This approach may change as more research is done and we learn more about the vitamin's role in disease prevention. The thing is our 'national' health service varies from town to town, surgery to surgery and GP to GP.
  7. Sorry, I made an assumption. I meant that it was significant to a person, like the OP, who is on benefits, (but also to pensioners, students etc), who would normally be entitled to free prescriptions. Their budgets would now have to pay for medicines they previously got for nothing. And, yes, I think that would be significant for some. A person who did have to pay for prescriptions should be savvy enough to work out what is cheaper over the counter, although I'm still confused why people continue to pay for branded ibuprofen, when supermarket-own is just as effective. I understand that medicine prices vary according to what they are. To have a system that varies the cost of the prescription dependent on that factor would probably be more expensive to administrate than maintaining the status quo.
  8. I can't help but think there's a bigger question lurking in the background here. I did read that the NHS is withdrawing prescriptions for certain items, paracetamol, nit shampoo, omega 3 etc. Presumably this is because the items are generally thought to be cheap over the counter, are not considered necessary for general health or where the efficacy is questionable. However, for people on low-incomes like the OP, where every penny counts, the impact may be significant. We can only assume that the deficiency that the OP is suffering is considered by the GP (at this time at least) not likely to be contributing to any current health issue. The OP should be able to challenge the GP's decision and the surgery shouldn't be placing obstacles in their way to prevent this, by falsely stating that there is a charge to view, not allowing a GP appointment to discuss, or forcing them down the SAR route.
  9. If you check the ICO website, you will find that it is free to view your records (following a SAR), but they may charge for copies. I would just take a photo.
  10. It seems not all GPs are the same. I asked the receptionist for a printout of my blood results for my records. They were printed off and given to me there an then.
  11. Me too! If I was a on the judgement panel, it would hinge on how the direct debit came to be cancelled. I didn't think MF's comments were sanctimonious. We are all guilty at times of blaming third-parties, when we should be taking responsibility ourselves (I am no exception). We should be able to voice our opinions, (within certain bounds), even if others do not like them, as they can make us stop and assess our thoughts and actions. BTW, what is a Royalties Account Holder, or a Gold or Platinum one for that matter?
  12. I may be talking nonsense, since I am not familiar with the prescription certificate system, but how difficult would it be and how much more expensive to have a card, rather like a bank card, that has an expiry date built in and which could be checked by the pharmacist before dispensing? Better still, an app, which would be more cost effective in the long-term. Legally, it may be that the onus is on the patient to check that the certificate is in order, but I can see that it would be an easy mistake to make in this hectic world.
  13. If this does turn out to be true (that is the manipulation of the waiting times was intentional) what should be the punishment? Do Hospitals generally use different software to manage waiting lists? Are other hospitals having the same problems? Is it true that shorter waiting lists attract bonuses and for whom? Can we really afford to do away with targets? It is one way we, the general public, can gauge the health of our hospitals - although, in truth, we don't get much choice when it comes to treatment. Being found out misleading or lying is, to me, far greater a cause for concern than simply telling the truth, however bad. Once trust is lost, it is rarely regained.
  14. Nigel1804, It is terrible to lose a parent at any time and can only be compounded when you believe poor or neglectful care has been a contributory factor. I understand your mum was unable to communicate, but it shouldn't be too much too hope that a care home employs staff who are trained and watchful of those most vulnerable. Under the Access to Medical Records Act 1990, I thought the care home had 21-40 days to respond to a request (I used this when I applied for my relative's records, although it was from a hospital not a care home). If the care home management (it should not matter that this specific care home has closed) do not do this or are unhelpful, I would contact the ICO for advice. Silverfox is right, even with a solicitor, the road is long and bumpy. There will be times when you want to scream, tear your hair out and cry. Is the solicitor no-win, no fee? The law is fickle, even with all evidence on your side, there is no guarantee that you will win the fight.
  15. So are you saying the home that mistreated your mum closed down, but the company that operated it are still in business and presumably operating other establishments? Complaining can be an utterly draining business.
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