Thursday, July 7, 2011

Exit stage left, please

I've been having an issue and thought it might be a good idea to go into NHS to talk to someone about it. So I booked an appointment, looking for a referral and then headed in for my appointment.

Met with the doc, explained the situation, filled out a form and she agreed that it was a good idea for me to see someone and started to tell me all about it while being the right degree of concerned and interested. She told me someone would contact me via mail (which always takes forever) to which I said, 'Oh, I'll need to change my address. We moved.'

The doc stopped in her tracks and inquired about my new address. As it turns out, I'm no longer in that particular NHS practice's 'area'. She said, 'I can't help you. You'll have to get a private doctor or find another NHS in your new neighbourhood.' No referral, no help, no apology - just a big fat - get out!

I protested and pointed out she agreed I needed to see someone lickety-split - and she said yes, I do - but it wasn't her responsibility any more. I was seriously stunned.

'I'm sorry,' she tried.

'No. You're not. And shame on you,' I replied with hostility oozing off each word like molten lava. I wanted to add: 'Take the Hippocratic oath didja?'

She looked away and I could tell she wasn't happy. I suppose it's not her fault, but  her bedside manner was definitely lacking and I was pissed so she got a shot of my nasty side. I don't care.

What makes me upset is that I am a tenacious individual and I will press on and get the care I need. But if someone less...aggressive/determined/etc was to be swept aside - I just wonder what would happen to them.

Now I have to find new doctors, a new practice, new everything for my entire family. I just don't need the headache, frankly. But one thing is for certain - I would never, ever go back to the Keats Group again after this. It was just insult to injury and in poor form. A pox on their house, I say.


  1. Oh that's awful, Erin. So sorry to hear that. I've had great experiences at Keats, I must say, but I think that with all the NHS reforms, everything is getting jangled up. But I don't think any doctor should ever kick a patient out after seeing them, and esp. if they identify a problem. That's just wrong.

    Delia Lloyd

  2. Oh that is wrong in so many many ways. There are massive holes in this system and you just circled one with a big red marker. Sorry kiddo! x

  3. That was really unprofessional. Yes, you are not 'supposed' to go to a practice that's out of your area, but people do, and especially if you've just moved you would think she could make an exception. I'm sorry you had such a bad experience with the NHS!

  4. Sorry to hear about this - I don't understand why people become doctors if they don't like people. Surely talking to ...and incidentally helping - people is most of the job. I had a great doc in London - NHS - Irish, told me to go ahead and have a tipple every night while pregnant...

  5. Yeah, unfortunately it is divided into areas that way by postcode. I feel bad for those working at the NHS, the government is not making things any easier for them at the minute. And I'm also sorry it happened to you, she could have been much better about it, especially since you had just moved. pshch.

  6. Oh how dreadful. Naughty doctor! Really hope you find a good new one quick before your trip. Lol.

  7. That's awful! I hope you find a new doctor very soon, if you haven't already.

  8. What happens to the less determined? From the discovery of a lump they end up waiting about 3 months for a diagnosis, 4 months for a lumpectomy (not mastectomy even though the doc says she'll need one in the future), and another month after that for chemo. That includes her frustrated employer sending her to a private doc to get a faster diagnosis, a process that still took about 10 days, a gain likely offset by a botched biopsy.
    I hope your issue is nothing serious. Be determined and firm. Calling often seems to work, in that squeeky wheel sense. If you truly need speed, go private for at least the Dx.

  9. On behalf of one of those people who has to be really ill to head to the doctors I say, "thank you."

    If, after overthrowing my fear of doctors, I was turned away there is no way I would go and find another one!


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