For over 10 years I have treated my COPD, now Stage 3 (never smoked, btw, my COPD is the result of lifelong asthma and bronchiectasis), in accordance with GOLD guidelines. To do this I have had to buy my own antibiotics.
I have no doubt at all that had I put up with NICE's paranoid and meagre prescribing guidelines I would be long dead. or, at least, very much worse than I currently am.
Last year I had a discharge report which hid the fact I'd been diagnosed with Addison's Disease from my GP (compounded by my not being informed personally).
Two weeks ago - same hospital - I got another so confusingly written that it's positively hazardous. Deeply unimpressed - change is very badly needed.
And, for the patient, who gets to decide what's urgent and what's not? A receptionist with no medical training?
I never bother my GP EXCEPT when it's urgent, and I do not want to be told "Go to hospital" when I do so, yet that's increasingly the default response - infuriating when I know I could be treated perfectly well at home, rather than being stuck in an unhygienic bay picking up every wandering bacterium that comes my way and winding up very much sicker than when I went in.
My pharmacist has stuck with branded Ventolin inhalers for years. Last year he switched to generics. While being much smaller they claim to contain the same amount of medication - they do not. They are also far less effective, needing a much higher dose. The valve mechanism is also defective and frequently fails.
Overall I use at least triple the amount of generic Salbutamol for far less benefit than Ventolin.
I can also buy my hydrocortisone (I have primary Addison's), on the open market for a mere fraction of the cost to my GP's budget. And that's paying retail prices.
Perhaps addressing the questions of quality and pricing should be priorities, NOT putting patients at risk by having them fobbed off by receptionists?
@Anonymous | GP Partner | 16 April 2014 5:49pm
I have always paid for every single piece of equipment I've needed - walking sticks, crutches, manual wheelchairs, powerchairs, nebulisers - the list goes one.
I will not - absolutely not - pay for the execrable food inflicted on patients in my local hospital.
I spent 10 weeks there last year, in three sessions, and saw the food go from adequate portions of very decent food, prepared in-house, to tiny, repellent, portions of outsourced dog food. And in one week, 14 of my pre-ordered meals - that's all of them - failed to arrive at all.
Pay for this? They should pay me.
"The newly nominated members would serve for four years from July."
Nominated? Elected, surely?
I have no trust in anything with which Hunt is involved. The man is not worthy of anybody's trust.
Re Anonymous | 07 March 2014 9:10am
Start charging for appointments and poor people might well die. Still, at least they'd stop bothering you.
Sorry - want to render - not what.
Is there anyone in this increasingly benighted country whose life this government does not what to render intolerable? Except their own, of course, and those of their "donors".
Damn - NOW they take automated telephone bookings,
I'm not surprised practices are fully booked by 08.30. My local surgery used to open at 08.30 - not they take automated telephone bookings from 06.00.
This means that very ill and/or chronically sick patients, who couldn't get up before 06.00 if you put a gun to their heads (and I speak from experience), don't have a prayer of getting an appointment by the time they're able to phone.
". . .those who come up with the old chestnut I cannot get through to my surgery."
Not so much an old chestnut, my anonymous friend, but a fact of life for many patients. Too many, perhaps.
@Anonymous, 14 May 2013 2:19pm
"...blaming our small societal group for society's ills and telling society that we are greedy and cunning and action must be taken."
Hmm . . . As a member of the chronically sick and disabled community (and be thankful you're not - it might make that final solution a lot more real), I could have sworn that we were the official hate figures, blamed for the ills of society.