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Independents' Day

Am I dreaming or is our life really getting better?

Soon patients will be able to register with a GP near their work.

This will free up time for the home GP. Good ­ no more late evening surgeries waiting for these patients and delaying us further if there is a traffic jam.

Patients will soon be able to pick up repeat scripts direct from the pharmacist without seeing their own GP.

Over-the-counter cold remedies, anti-allergics and anti-diarrhoea medicines could also be picked up from the pharmacist free of charge for those entitled to free scripts.

Practice nurses are now fully trained to do chronic disease managment.

Health visitors are receiving training for baby's immunisation and are being encouraged to do flu vaccinations at home, thus freeing time for our nurses and, indirectly, the GPs.

Nurse practitioners are already seeing and dealing with minor ailments. Some nurses are doing triage and filtering our work. More polyclinics and nurse-led clinics in primary care will certainly reduce our workload.

Acute problems are always sent to the hospital and not a primary care problem. Discharges are looked after by district nurses routinely.

Am I just dreaming or is this Santa's present?

From Dr Anita Sharma, Oldham

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