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Timewaster patients anger GPs

GPs are fed up with dealing with patients who do not look after themselves properly and have unrealistic expectations of the NHS, a survey has found.

One in four of 150 GPs questioned by Norwich Union Healthcare said they spent more than 30 per cent of their day dealing with patients who did not need to see them. Some 87 per cent said a major cause of dissatisfaction was dealing with patients whose expectations were too high.

Two out of five GPs said they were contacted by more than 20 per cent of patients who were awaiting a specialist appointment because their condition had worsened.

More than seven out of 10 GPs said their biggest cause of dissatisfaction was an inability to spend enough time with patients ­ up from 61 per cent in last year's survey.

Despite the irritations, 46 per cent of GPs were 'moderately satisfied in their job'.

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