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Home truths from Chesterfield


I don’t agree either. GPs have been working hard to meet demand and yes a lot of it has been done remotely but this has been for safety reasons. Do you seriously want to have waiting rooms full of people during a pandemic? Especially since we didn’t even receive any so called PPE till quite late on in many cases. This is a virus about which we know very little and the more we learn about it the less reassured I am. And yet we still have very flippant attitudes about “getting back to normal” when we still have an average of 4000 new cases a day (recent ONS figures). They have been taking precautions (quite rightly) in AEs with PPE etc and virtually all hospital appts are being done remotely (also have they not been saying that the numbers visiting AE depts are down compared to previous years?) yet in primary care we are expected to just carry on as normal? The only reason the NHS “coped” is that everything else has been paused to deal with coronavirus. As you know GPs have been bringing patients in that need F2F reviews and doing home visits too. Our access to diagnostics etc is severely limited so apologies that we can’t perform MRIs and endoscopes and carry out appendicectomies etc ourselves in primary care but perhaps this could all be included in future contracts??!! I have to say though that so far throughout all this I have felt that secondary care colleagues have been working well with us and they have been giving advice and organising reviews via telephone and kinesis etc that has really helped with managing patients. So there are some positives (albeit not many) to come out of this. However, the question that was so innocently posed by S from Chesterfield was feeding into the distorted view that GPs and our dental colleagues are lazy and don’t want to see patients. This is simply not true and is an insult to all colleagues who have been working flat out during these difficult months. As a bunch we GPs are terrible at defending ourselves against such attacks and just get on with things but sometimes enough is enough! I would suggest you focus on how primary and secondary care can work better together through technology and other means. This pandemic is far from over and sadly with the messaging coming out of govt that has resulted in the scenes of overcrowded beaches etc (am not looking forward to seeing what happens on 4th July) that is likely to result in a rise of cases again.

Posted date

26 Jun 2020

Posted time