To think having to get to the doctors at 6:45am...

(47 Posts)
ThisTimeItsPersonal Tue 10-Sep-13 07:17:47

Just to get an appointment is unreal!

I got here at 6:45 and there was a queue!! And the people who got here at 7 when they actually open probably wont be able to get an appointment until this afternoon sometime.

I dont blame the actual doctors, they do a really fab job and them and the receptionists are really brilliant at dealing with people - as you get some right nasty people when they can't get an appointment.

But honestly - im tired and yesterday when i rang they didnt have anything available for over two weeks!!!

williaminajetfighter Tue 10-Sep-13 07:18:37

Holy moly OP! Where are you based? London?

ThisTimeItsPersonal Tue 10-Sep-13 07:31:50

How did you guess wink

Just outside really, between west London and the south east.

Im so tired, dd is 6 weeks and didnt fancy sleeping until about 11 sad

Sparklingbrook Tue 10-Sep-13 07:32:51

shock OMG that is bizarre. Our GP doesn't even open til 8.30am.

ThisTimeItsPersonal Tue 10-Sep-13 08:39:40

sparkling i wish! I feel for the doctors having to be there so early too!

Writerwannabe83 Tue 10-Sep-13 08:44:18

Oh yeah, those poor GPs. It must be hard getting up at 6am for their £100'000 a year salary hmm smile

But seriously, that is bad! The last thing you want to do when you feel poorly is hang around in queues at that time in the morning! I hope you get a slot and you feel better soon smile

pinkdelight Tue 10-Sep-13 09:04:38

can't you ring up for a same day appointment? why do you have to physically go there? or is it a drop-in? either way, queueing from that time is bonkers. can you switch surgeries? i'm in London and ours is nowhere near that crazy plus there's lots of drop-in clinics around.

TarkaTheOtter Tue 10-Sep-13 09:05:24

What a ridiculous appt system. Those who really need emergency appts are going to struggle to queue up outside at 6.45. Can you change surgery?

Hegsy Tue 10-Sep-13 09:09:19

6.45am shock I called my docs at 8.15 and have a 10.40 appt. No way I could have been there at 6.45.

ThisTimeItsPersonal Tue 10-Sep-13 09:09:49

I cant change surgery really because the only other one i can easily get to isnt taking patients at the moment sad
You can call but the phones don't open until 8 and they rarely have appointments left by the time i actually get through.
Its a shame because as i say, the doctors there are actually really good!

littlemisswise Tue 10-Sep-13 09:13:37

6:45am!shock is there two 6:45s in the day then? If I had to get to my doctors at that time I'd never get an appointment!

I had a four day migraine last week. I phoned at 11:00 on Friday and was seen at 4:00. Can't complain, my doctors are fab, the receptionists are lovely. I told my GP that my DH is going away next week for 4 months, she said not to struggle in (I am disabled) request a home visit and she'll pop out. I love her!

Souredstones Tue 10-Sep-13 09:14:07

My surgery operates in a similar way, get there from 7:30 to queue, doors open at 8:30, everyone gets seen on a first come first served basis - no morning bookable appointments.

I was absolutely raging yesterday when I duly got there at 7:30, 3rd in the queue, a dotty doris turns up at 8:25 and a teenager soon after, boldly walk straight to the front of the queue without so much as a backwards glance. FURIOUS!! (I do have rage at silly things!)

I've, in the past, rung at lunchtime, and always been able to get a bookable evening appointment within 24 hours. Sadly I had to go yesterday morning for a phased return certificate, I hate rude people!

DeathMetalMum Tue 10-Sep-13 09:14:39

That is rediculous. I strolled into my gp's at 11.45 last week and was given a same day apppintment in the afternoon.

ThisTimeItsPersonal Tue 10-Sep-13 09:26:09

soured that would give me the rage too! I would have said something though grin

PeacockPlumage Tue 10-Sep-13 09:41:11

What a ridiculous system! Shocking. I would move, pronto. (Surgery, not house, though I'd consider it!)

Our practice has an automated booking system so you can book an appointment from the comfort of your own bed in the middle of the night if need be.

Weegiemum Tue 10-Sep-13 09:47:38

My dh is a GP, his surgery opens at 8, and he starts surgery at 9. Everyone gets seen the same day if needed. But then he's single handed in a rural area, only has 1800 patients and has worked there for 6 years so knows pretty much everyone who comes regularly, and most of the others too. He doesn't go in early but regularly stays late to do leftover house calls and admin - wasn't home till after 10 last night.

Queuing up at 6.45 is mental. What if you're too ill to queue, or disabled? I've never heard of this and I've been around GP-land for over 15 years (though admittedly a lot of that was rurally where time pressures are less but distance pressures more!)

Amrapaali Tue 10-Sep-13 09:53:54

Shit! 6:45 in the morning!! My surgery has recently introduced online appointment systems. Hallelujah!! I can't tell you of the relief. Calling at 8:15 AM on the dot, hanging on the phone, redialling a hundred times... things of the past now.

Why is this not being rolled out across the country?

I feel for you, OP.

glastocat Tue 10-Sep-13 09:56:58

That's crazy. Here in Oz I have a walk in clinic, it's open from 7 am until 10 pm every day, and it's free. In Ireland I had to pay 60 euro a visit which was awful, but at least you could usually get seen the day you wanted. I remember London waiting times being crazy when I lived there, sounds like its got much worse though.

Lampshadeofdoom Tue 10-Sep-13 10:02:30

My dr works a weird system like this, dd waited 8 days for an appointment last time she was poorly sad they didn't even ask if I needed an urgent one for her being a small child.

PeacockPlumage Tue 10-Sep-13 10:02:56

I think with a new baby, this is going to become a madsive issue for you. I would put in a formal complaint with the practice manager, asking them to review their booking system. You could also contact the local commissioning group as they are responsible for services available.

mirry2 Tue 10-Sep-13 10:06:13

Well that's what it's like for most of us living in London sad

LaFataTurchina Tue 10-Sep-13 10:06:53

Change GPs!

I see you live in between London and the South East. Are you near any 'commuter' stations? I am in the middle of the commuter belt and my GP stay open 'till 8pm a few eves. a week and also on Saturday morning. You can also get a phone consultation.

allmycats Tue 10-Sep-13 10:11:01

Where I am I had towait 6 weeks, yes 6 weeks !! for the results of some blood tests, there was no earlier appt. as this was not 'an urgent situation' it does not matter if you are taking the wrong dose of thyroxin for 6 weeks apparently.
Urgent appointments are done 'on the day' i.e you phone in and tell them your symptoms and then some one calls you back to triage you and if you are sick enough you get an appointment for that day.
When you go to see the doc and they give you a slip saying 'come back to see me in 2 weeks' you hand this in at reception to be told 'there are no appointments for xx weeks - 'but doctor wants to see me in 2 weeks' you say and they say 'well they don't know what is pre booked' so you can have xx or nothing !!
It's shit service for appointments but the Docs are brilliant (especially now Doc.Arrogant Prick has gone !!)

Seaweedy Tue 10-Sep-13 10:13:50

Are you sure they don't have specific morning salts kept for babies and small children? My old London surgery was insanely busy, but if you phoned or just showed up with a sick small person by eight thirty am, a doctor would see you almost immediately, as they kept a few 'child emergency' slots every morning.

Am now living in the country with a dumb system whereby all mornings at the GP surgery are non-appointment. Which s fine if you don't work and don't mind angling around, but not great if your toddler doesn't fancy waiting for two hours in a waiting room full of tetchy, coughing people...

ThisTimeItsPersonal Tue 10-Sep-13 10:46:06

It used to be a lot better at my doctors but in the past couple of years its gotten like this - even the midwife there was telling me how ridiculous it was!

We're hoping to move in 6 months or so and will hopefully get a better surgery!

Nancy66 Tue 10-Sep-13 10:49:17

I sometimes feel like I must live in some parallel universe.

I'm also in London but get Drs appointments really easily. Often same day. No mad, queuing system, no bonkers ring back system.

ouryve Tue 10-Sep-13 10:53:35

6:45am? That's ridiculous.

Our surgery has joined the 21st century and we can now book appointments online. Rarely the same day, though, since the village has grown so much in the past few years.

HeffalumpTheFlump Tue 10-Sep-13 10:54:12

You have nice receptionists?! shock I will take getting there for 6.45 to not have the rude cow at mine look down her nose at me and use her extensive medical training to determine whether my thrush does actually deserve an appointment that day or whether I can wait two weeks. angry

ThisTimeItsPersonal Tue 10-Sep-13 11:15:57

heffalump offer to show her your foof - bet you'd get an appt straight away wink

HeffalumpTheFlump Tue 10-Sep-13 11:19:22

She's a rude cow, but no one deserves that haha.

treaclesoda Tue 10-Sep-13 16:16:27

our village surgery is fairly similar, you need to know six weeks in advance that you're going to be sickhmm I once needed an appointment with the female dr (male Dr refused to examine female patients for gynae things, as there was no nurse to chaperone) and the next available one was 12 weeks away. Thank goodness I can drive and was able to change surgeries to somewhere that I can actually see a doctor.

SueDoku Tue 10-Sep-13 18:23:10

That's awful...! Our surgery has an on-line booking system, so you can see what appointments are available and book the one that suits you (they offer telephone consultations as well as face-to-face appointments).

I've never had to wait for more than a day for an appointment, and they will usually see you the same day if it's an emergency.

Another good reason for not living in the south-east shock

kali110 Tue 10-Sep-13 18:35:18

I wish i could have your docs! I would glady get up for that. Mine open 9-5 so your screwed if you work full time :-(
People who say complain till they change it, becareful what you wish for. Mine are appointment only. 3 weeks is the shortest wait iv ever had!i had migraine for a week and ended up having to go a&e instead.

kali110 Tue 10-Sep-13 18:36:27

I dont live in or near london eithet

RevoltingPeasant Tue 10-Sep-13 18:40:49

Wow, I am so grateful for our GPs! They have a phone booking system, online booking, and you can often get seen the same day if you don't mind who you see, or within a week or so for a specific dr.

The receptionists are nice and when they screw up, like last week where they made me an appt with the phlebotomist instead of the nurse, they say sorry and fix it.

Mind you, the fact that judging by MN this seems to be unusual is really sad.

chrome100 Tue 10-Sep-13 18:45:06

That's insane! I live in a big city and just ring up and ask for an appointment on a certain day and get it. How can you do first come first served when you work etc. It's just not possible.

buttermellow Tue 10-Sep-13 18:48:38

Good grief.. My GP surgery always have spare appointments, no problem getting one or a phone consultantation. They can usually offer an appointment either on the day or within 48 hours or so. Quite often phoned and they say 'em can you come up now?' .. They employ 9 GPs though and I think 12 nurses so maybe thats the difference. Receptionists are lovely too, really nice ladies.

jacks365 Tue 10-Sep-13 19:12:13

I'm rural and there is only one surgery. They do a combined appointment at 8 weeks for mum and baby check and first injections or at least in theory they do our appointment came through for when dd was 15 weeks old. Only time I've managed to get a same day appointment was when the midwife wanted dd checking. Oddly enough the midwife managed to get the appointment for me and my health visitor managed to get our check up brought forward.

Our area is that bad for appointments that the miu has put up a notice specifying that they only treat injuries and anything else will be turned away.

LaGuardia Tue 10-Sep-13 20:58:33

In London you have walk-in centres and out-of-hours GP surgeries in hospitals. You are much better off than us bumpkins.

Blimey! I never have any difficulty getting an appointment within a couple of days with my doctors surgery. If its something that's a bit more urgent they will try to book me in with their sister surgery 5 miles away.

The receptionists are lovely, chirpy ladies who will go out of their way to help. I've heard some horror stories on here.

We're due to move out the area in a few weeks and am not looking forward to registering with another practice sad

MollyBerry Tue 10-Sep-13 22:09:56

I live in London and don't have any of these problems with the GP, just ring up in the morining at 8 and you get an appointment that day! They even do evening surgeries once a week

HHH3 Tue 10-Sep-13 22:58:59

I'm really lucky with my drs. It's open 8am-8pm 365 days a year. I can ring and usually get an appointment within 24-48 hours. Or I can go in and wait to be seen if it's urgent. The receptionists (bar one) are lovely.

Far, far better than the surgery I was registered with before but that's a whole other story!

Darkesteyes Tue 10-Sep-13 23:01:32

Nancy does yr surgery know that you are a journalist It may have something to do with the fact that you get your appts so easily.

grumpyoldbat Wed 11-Sep-13 08:28:26

That's an awful system shock. People who are sick enough to need an urgent doctors appointment shouldn't be queuing from that early. In fact a system like that could ensure the sickest don't get seen at all. It's like the ones with the most stamina get the reward of the appointment, here was me thinking GP appointments were for when you're not well.

You said they open at 7, so before that people are queuing outside in all weathers? When do they start queuing?

ThisTimeItsPersonal Wed 11-Sep-13 12:23:12

No idea what time they start queuing, one of the people in front of me had already been there 10 minutes when i got there at 6:45, its an awful system but as pp said we do have walk in centres, but I've never had a nice doctor at mine, in fact the last one told me to feed dd x amount and if shes still hungry 'just ignore her, she'll learn' shock he was nasty sad I'd rather get up and queue. But I feel for the people who are really seriously too ill to queue.

Nancy66 Wed 11-Sep-13 12:32:26

Darkestyes - no, definitely not. It just seems to be that rarity. An efficiently run surgery.

SusanneLinder Wed 11-Sep-13 12:57:14

Shit! 6:45 in the morning!! My surgery has recently introduced online appointment systems. Hallelujah!! I can't tell you of the relief. Calling at 8:15 AM on the dot, hanging on the phone, redialling a hundred times... things of the past now.

Why is this not being rolled out across the country?

I dunno-but I sooo want that system. DD was ill, and I had to ring 32 times before I got through!

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