Cookie policy notice

By continuing to use this site you agree to our cookies policy below:
Since 26 May 2011, the law now states that cookies on websites can ony be used with your specific consent. Cookies allow us to ensure that you enjoy the best browsing experience.

This site is intended for health professionals only

At the heart of general practice since 1960

Patients lose faith in NHS because of late diagnosis, NHS 'fooling' foreign nurses, and retiree GPs should go (South) West

A round-up of the morning’s health news headlines

The Telegraph claims that a ‘quarter of patients are losing faith in the NHS because of late cancer diagnosis’ with some visiting their GP three times or more before being referred for tests.

But the article, based on a University College London study of more than 60,000 patients who were diagnosed after a GP referral, doesn’t quite justify its headline, stating that 13,300 saw their GP three times before being referred.

And that longer diagnosis left patients more dissatisfied with their care, and 40% of those surveyed were unhappy with the communications between their GP and hospitals. It does note that ‘32% of patients said they lacks ‘confidence and trust in ward nurses’, which may explain the headline.

Dr Georgios Lyratzopoulos from UCL said: ‘When they occur, diagnostic delays are largely due to cancer symptoms being extremely hard to distinguish from other diseases, combined with a lack of accurate and easy-to-use tests.’

The NHS has been accused of using ‘aggressive’ marketing tactics to ‘fool’ European nurses into immigrating to Britain to work, the BBC reports.

According to nursing leads in Portugal, Spain and Italy, locum and recruitment companies working on behalf of the NHS offer language training and accommodation deals.

But Spanish Council of Nursing president Dr Maximo Jurado told BBC News: ‘They lie - they fool nurses. Perhaps a group of nurses go to a country, rent a flat, and they think they are going to work at a particular hospital.

‘Then that company organising temporary work sends nurses one day to a hospital in one city, another day to a different hospital in a different city.’

And finally, GPs packing their bags and leaving the profession would do well to head South West, as a survey by insurers Prudential has badged Devon and Dorset as the top two areas to retire to – and four other south western regions in the top 20.

The Guardian reports of both areas have excellent predicted life expectancy, and a recovering GPs will be in excellent company as Devon has 65.6 healthcare workers per 1,000 head of population.

Readers' comments (1)

  • average wait for a discharge letter / clinic letter from one of our nearby hospitals is around 2 months. Maybe that's why the public complains about communication between GPs and hospitals, but of course easy for media to blame the GP.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

IMPORTANT: On Wednesday 7 December 2016, we implemented a new log in system, and if you have not updated your details you may experience difficulties logging in. Update your details here. Only GMC-registered doctors are able to comment on this site.