To think I might just give up having a GP altogether?

(88 Posts)
higgle Wed 30-Jul-14 10:04:27

I seldom need to visit my GP and when I do it is usually for some medication I could buy off the internet anyway.

I find the whole hassle of trying to get appointment, never being able to see "my" GP and the dark musty waiting room always staffed by a real dragon of a receptionist who has no idea of the concept of confidentiality a nightmare. The in house pharmacy never has either of the two things I've been prescribed in stock.

Now they have taken to pursuing me ( due to my advanced age) with patronising letters in large print about screening tests for things I know I haven't got or have made a conscious and informed decision I do not want. I can self refer for most things that might happen to me to the local BUPA hospital and if the need arises I suppose I could see another GP privately so I'm thinking of just asking to come off their list altogether and going without a GP - would that be a terrible thing to do?

ftmsoon Wed 30-Jul-14 10:18:01

You can feel free to deregister but will this mean you are not entitled to any NHS treatment? What would happen when you then get presented with a bill at A&E?
The screening tests are a numbers game: the more people screened, the more likely someone with the condition will be picked up. Not sure how you can 'know' you don't have any of these conditions, but if you don't want to know, that's different and feel free to bury your head in the sand.

NorwaySpruce Wed 30-Jul-14 10:23:56

I've opted out of most screening (the surgery wrote to me giving me the option).

I keep a place on the list though, as private treatment for most things would be hideously expensive.

I don't mind what state the waiting rooms are, or what the receptionists are like (they are wonderful actually) as I haven't been there in 6+ years. And if I did need a GP, the waiting room/receptionist would be the very least of my concerns.

It's just easier to stay in the system, than rearrange everything if I should need it in the future.

There isn't anything terrible about opting out; you do sound slightly petulant in your OP though.

You realise that the surgery won't actually care, and will just be happy to have freed up space on their list?

mumblechum1 Wed 30-Jul-14 10:35:58

I never go any more. Over the course of two years, 3 different GPs told me I had arthritis in my shoulder (couldn't raise it above chest height, was v painful. None of them actually examined me.

A work colleague said it sounded like frozen shoulder, I googled it, went privately to a consultant who confirmed that it was indeed that, and who fixed it in 2 minutes with an injection.

IME GPs rarely have any answers and just either refer you on to a specialist (which you can do yourself if your policy allows), or say it's just one of those things, take paracetemol.

Teddybeau1988 Wed 30-Jul-14 10:51:38

Yanbu

I use a weekend walk in service instead of having the hassle of trying to get an appointment at my surgery.

The last time I saw my GP I had had a phone call requesting an appointment with him regarding blood results. I'm under a heamotologist for clotting issues. I arrived with my dd, who was a month old, in a carry seat, plus huge change bag. Dr then went on to explain he wanted my medication adjusted for the upcoming birth. I had to point out three times I had the baby already.

ICanSeeTheSun Wed 30-Jul-14 10:56:28

You never know if your Heath is going to turn and I would prefer the knowledge that I had a GP and the nhs behind me.

Do private doctors write sick notes.

higgle Wed 30-Jul-14 11:23:13

You can still get NHS treatment if not registered, I have my NHS number and I suppose I could just register again, the local surgery who refused to attend my home birth always have vacancies. I just prefer Dr Google and the on lie pharmacy for routine stuff.

blueemerald Wed 30-Jul-14 11:34:13

No one in my immediate family is registered with a GP. I deregistered after they lost 13 samples of my blood while I was trying to be tested for glandular fever the easter before my A levels. The same GP service misdiagnosed the appendicitis that nearly killed my brother (ruptured appendix, 3 hour surgery and 2 week hospital stay). That caused him and my mother to deregister.

I was unable to join any other surgery as they operate a catchment system.

On the rare occasion I have needed a GP since I have used the outstanding "drop in" service at our local hospital and more recently the new drop in service at a new GP surgery that has opened in the area that we are one street too far across to join.

I've never had any problem getting treatment of any sort.

macdoodle Wed 30-Jul-14 11:41:18

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Wellwellwell3holesintheground Wed 30-Jul-14 12:34:57

I thought you meant guinea pig. I need to get off mumsnet.

areyoumymother Wed 30-Jul-14 15:04:57

Macdoodle What's the attitude for?!

The OP feels the treatment she receives has been rubbish. Quite frankly my sympathies are with her, having personally experienced the joys of being refused an appropriate referral when still unable to walk six months post-partum unless I paid for it!! However, it's still the OP's right to turn up claiming help if she needs it in the future. It doesn't mean she will have changed her mind about the service; changed circumstances could mean that she simply wishes to try every option.

IMO patients tend to be keenly aware that the NHS gives a shit about them. And stop playing the sympathy card for GPs - most of my GP friends acknowledge they're less overworked than many professionals these days. Teachers, for one.

areyoumymother Wed 30-Jul-14 15:05:38

doesn't give a shit about them

Selks Wed 30-Jul-14 15:13:54

Macdoodle I know you are a very put-upon GP (as you have explained in many threads on here) but people do have the right to discuss issues with GP care, you know....hmm

higgle Wed 30-Jul-14 16:25:54

I was rather thinking it might be a win win situation for my GP and me, I'm sure she has better things to do than prescribe the odd packet of antibiotics for UTI or cream for my occasional outbreak of eczema. My lifestyle diet etc are fine and I'm as sure as anyone can be I'm not diabetic. I think the NHS would spend less on me if I just go private for the odd appointment or us a drop in centre.

awsomer Wed 30-Jul-14 16:29:11

Macdoodle, it's not the GP (or any GPs) she has an issue with; its the difficulty in getting to see one and receive prescriptions. She's saying she's found ways around this issue so should she just de-reg completely, which will also have the added bonus of avoiding the screening test letters.

I fully advocate the NHS so I say what's the harm in staying registered higgle? That way if/when you do need a GP you'll at least have the option of NHS vs Private. You'll have to go in and speak to the receptionist about not wanting to receive further communication though.

ShakeYourTailFeathers Wed 30-Jul-14 16:33:44

I'm not sure Dr google, self referral and buying drugs off the internet is ever a good idea though?

awsomer Wed 30-Jul-14 16:35:35

Most surgeries are extremely overwhelmed. I know that at mine you cannot make a pre-bookable appointment unless it's been directed by the GP (e.g. as a follow up). So this is how you see the much conveted and guarded GPs...

Call at exactly 8am, if you're lucky enough to be one of the first callers you have to tell the secretary what your issue is so she can decide if you get to go through to nurse triage.
Triage is where a nurse will call you back on phone at some point that morning, you tell them your issue.
Next stage: if the nurse decides its 'enough' to warrent a GP appointment you get one. The same day. At a time decided by then.

My questions, and perhaps Macdoodle can help me with these:
1) Do the secretaries get any kind of training?
2) Why can't I make an appointment for later in the week (e.g. my day off)
3) Surely the ten minutes it takes to talk to the nurse on the phone plus my ten minute appointment with a GP costs the surgery more than just giving me an appointment with the GP and skipping the interrogation triage call?

OneDreamOnly Wed 30-Jul-14 16:38:46

Tbh whether the OP deregister or not, she is hardly using her GP anyway as she has found better ways to look after herself.

OP do as you like. It won't be a major issue for you, not for your GP as you don't see them often anyway.
The only thing I would think about is what if one day you need an appointment for something you've never had and it's urgent. What would you do then?

That sort of thread makes me sad sad. Because that's exactly the way the government wants things to move. A nice private health service and no costly NHS.

SantasLittleMonkeyButler Wed 30-Jul-14 16:39:07

YANBU to seek healthcare elsewhere - in fact, if you can afford to go private & would prefer to then why not? One less person wanting an appointment with their already overstretched NHS GP surely?

However, I see no point at all in actively deregistering. You can easily decline or ignore the screening invitations (many do). Simply staying on a list makes work for no-one & it might be handy to be registered somewhere in the future.

If you do deregister, your actual GP will probably not even know. Just creates a bit of work for the admin staff & that's that.

thatstoast Wed 30-Jul-14 16:39:23

I think we did this last week and the general opinion was that not using the NHS was unreasonable. At the moment, people seem to be agreeing with you so either this thread is going to turn horrible very quickly (I hope not) or we might have to admit that AIBU isn't the best place for actual advice.

I don't see that anyone is going to mind if you deregister- absolutely your decision. I'd be very cautious buying medicine over the internet though

Salmotrutta Wed 30-Jul-14 16:40:56

I'm glad my very overworked GP doesn't communicate with his patients the way you often communicate on here macdoodle.

You are in danger of losing empathy for your workload if you keep being rude.

Bunbaker Wed 30-Jul-14 16:42:32

"I just prefer Dr Google and the on line pharmacy for routine stuff."

Woah! That doesn't sound like a sensible alternative. Are you a qualified doctor? How can you be sure that any antibiotics required are the correct ones to treat an infection? How can you be sure that you have an infection rather than a virus? How can you be sure that online drugs aren't fake or dangerous?

Have you withdrawn from all screening programmes? Why do you think they are a waste of your time? Why are you so defensive (and petulant, as another poster put it)?

Is there not another surgery you can register with?

I am pleased with all the screening. I look after myself and having been given a clean bill of health recently (smear test, mammogram, 5 year health test) I intend to stay that way. But if you want to take the head in the sand approach that is no business of mine and it frees up a place at your local surgery for someone who needs it more than you do

OneDreamOnly Wed 30-Jul-14 16:43:17

Why was it agreed that not using the NHS was unreasonable?
Just curious.

OneDreamOnly Wed 30-Jul-14 16:50:39

Bun some people think that the risk associated with doing the tests are too high compare to the risks of the illness itself. Smear tests are a good example for that.

Some people are very rarely ill. Or when they are, they have the same thing again and again and given the same stuff again and again (eczema us a good example for that). Why not just buying the stuff yourself. It won't be much more expensive than the NHS anyway.

But what you can't do us say that people like that are clearly stupid not to go and see their GP automatically or to follow the 'government' advise fir the testing. You don't have to do all the tests.

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