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to think that I shouldn't have to swallow my principles to save the NHS money?

(252 Posts)
Tollund Wed 12-Dec-12 10:36:50

I was seen by a practice nurse this morning and prescribed antibiotics for my chest infection. When he wrote the prescription I said that if they were capsules with gelatine in them I couldn't take them and would need the medicine instead. He told me that he didn't know if they did or not and didn't have time to research it, and if I really couldn't bring myself to take them I'd have to ask the pharmacist what they would recommend. I've been here before so I said that they wouldn't prescribe anything and I'd end up having to come back to pick up yet another prescription. He said to go and see what they said but he wouldn't prescribe the medicine as it was more expensive. (I'm guessing he doesn't see a lot of Hindus and not sure how far he'd get suggesting that people should take things containing boiled up connective tissue and bones whether they've spent a lifetime avoiding them or not.)

So I went to the pharmacist and exactly what I had said would happen, happened and I've wasted over an hour trying to get them to liaise amongst themselves so I didn't physically need to run between the surgery and chemist to pick up prescriptions myself. (With a chest infection when it's -2!)

AIBU to think that the practice nurse was being a total arse and that I shouldn't be made to run around wasting time because he "was too busy" and clearly thought I was being stupid for not just taking the gelatine?

Tollund Wed 12-Dec-12 10:38:09

(Sorry, just realised that I hadn't made clear that I'm a lifelong vegetarian and don't take/eat any animal products.)

EverythingsDozy Wed 12-Dec-12 10:40:55

If its a religious thing (which it looks that way as you mentioned you're Hindu?) then of course yanbu. In fact, even if you weren't religious, he should still be prescribing you things that fit with your moral stance. The doctor was BU but unfortunately, I have no advice on that, but no, YWNBU.

rotavirusrita Wed 12-Dec-12 10:41:44

I was ready to say yabu but actually as its for religious reasons i dontthink u r. Send a letter to your gp practice aking then to add to your notes that u cant have gelatine et. and ask for a new script. I dont think the price difference is huge

MissCellania Wed 12-Dec-12 10:42:07

I understand your principles, but personally I would say that if you don't want the prescribed drugs, there should be a facility for you to pay in full for the ones you do want. If they are a lot more expensive, you should make up the difference yourself. But since I presume that isn't possible, they should haev just given you the presecription to suit you.

squeakytoy Wed 12-Dec-12 10:43:13

I think I would rather be well than stick to my principles to be honest.

Tollund Wed 12-Dec-12 10:43:38

Sorry, I'm not a Hindu but have been a lifelong vegetarian, and I don't really see why there should be a difference; I have many reasons for my choices which are surely as valid (if not more so) than saying that it is for religious reasons?

chrismissymoomoomee Wed 12-Dec-12 10:43:56

The antibiotics would have been tested on animals, I don't really see the difference tbh.

You need to make it clear that you are Hindu and can't eat animal products - I would complain if I were you about her sensitivity if you told her and I would get it recorded on your medical notes.

Most capsules use pork gelatine so Jewish people won't use them either and they need to be sensitive to religion here.

JellicleCat Wed 12-Dec-12 10:46:24

YANBU and I would ask for a note to be put on your records as Rota says.

I might also be thinking about a complaint to the practice saying you are being discriminated against on religious grounds, and I am NOT ususually one to use the complaint route at the drop of a hat.

Tollund Wed 12-Dec-12 10:46:40

The difference is that the medicine contains no animal products and the capsules do contain parts of dead animals that cause problems for many groups including Hindus, Muslims, vegetarians and vegans...

blondietinsellyminx Wed 12-Dec-12 10:46:43

Complain to the practice manager, explain you're Hindu and cannot eat gelatine at all and that you explained this to the nurse you saw. You've now had delay to treatment and been sent runnning snout in freezing temps, whilst suffering a chest infection. not only is the nurse's attitude unhelpful and inefficient but also, they're leaving themselves open to possible religious discrimination claims (which would bump up their professional insurance costs somewhat...)

Hope you get suitable antibiotics and feel better soon.

And they can give you a private prescription - my dh is veggie (not for religious reasons) so he would just pay for them himself.

Tollund Wed 12-Dec-12 10:47:59

Sorry - I'm not Hindu! grin

blondietinsellyminx Wed 12-Dec-12 10:48:08

iFail, *about, not snout!

MissCellania Wed 12-Dec-12 10:48:09

Well then if they can do that, they should. Your principles are your own affair and shouldn't be paid for with nhs money.

gordyslovesheep Wed 12-Dec-12 10:48:52

yanbu - hope it gets sorted soon

Tollund Wed 12-Dec-12 10:48:58

But yes, this has never been a problem before when I've said that I can't have gelatine, I've always just been prescribed something else and no one has ever kicked off about the price!

cantspel Wed 12-Dec-12 10:49:16

Just open the capsule remove the medicine and take it and throw the capsule in the bin. Why does everything have to be suck a big deal?

OutragedAtThePriceOfFreddos Wed 12-Dec-12 10:50:06

If you want free medicine when you are ill, then you have to take what you are offered if it will o the job it's required to do.

If you want the luxury of choice, then pay to see a private GP and pay the full price for the medication you want to choose.

You think you shouldn't have to compromise your principles to save the NHS money, I think the NHS shouldn't have to waste money to bow to your principles. They are your choice, so you pay for them.

renaldo Wed 12-Dec-12 10:50:34


OldernotWiser47 Wed 12-Dec-12 10:52:14

Yabu. The medicine costs 10 times as much as the capsules, when you could just open the capsules, put content on spoon and leave caps behind.

Tollund Wed 12-Dec-12 10:52:44

cantspel - a lot of medicines aren't effective if you do this.

Thank you blondie and Laurie - I will definitely write a letter to make sure that something goes on my file...

saintlyjimjams Wed 12-Dec-12 10:53:12

The problem is the price difference can be enormous (£20 versus £200 for example). The price difference is ridiculous clearly, but it may be that the practice nurse doesn't have authorisation to write the more expensive script. Or it may be unlicensed.

DS1 is severely autistic and can't swallow capsules and although I don't tend to give him medication if we wanted, for example, liquid melatonin, it would have to be paediatrician prescribed - whereas we could now get a capsules from the GP.

He should have explained the situation clearly to you though.

AllSnowballsAndNoKnickers Wed 12-Dec-12 10:53:29

What Freddos and cantspel said.

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