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Charging £25 to see a doctor....

(85 Posts)
cantheyseeme Fri 26-Jul-13 21:31:23

What does everyone think about this stuff in the news today? would you pay?

currentlyconfuseddotcom Sat 27-Jul-13 09:51:41

Apart from vaccinations, which might have prevented a serious illness/disease, every other single gp trip in my lifetime has either been pointless or actively damaging so I guess I'm one of those people who might have wasted GP time, albeit not frequently.

I don't agree with charging people who have serious conditions, or like lljkk, just for the first appointment. I believe in the welfare state, although it could be better managed. I have a bit more understanding of charging e.g. if people go in with a cold. But there would have to be age restrictions, i.e. not for over 60s.

SconeInSixtySeconds Sat 27-Jul-13 09:59:53

Having lived in a country that required payment, I would say no - no that is a terrible idea.

What would be better IMO, is to charge those who don't turn up to appointments without letting the surgery know. That is a bloody disgrace.

Bunbaker Sat 27-Jul-13 10:04:08

"Oh for gods sake predictive text"

Can't you switch it off?

Predictive text drives me round the bend so I always disable it on my phones.

kissmyheathenass Sat 27-Jul-13 10:08:06

The NHS is unsustainable, something has to be done. It won't be popular but changes somewhere have to be made. I am very reluctant to see more burden put on the working poor though.

Groovee Sat 27-Jul-13 10:11:26

I have a chronic condition which can have me at the GP every other week at times and other times not go for months! I'd probably not go when I have to. I had a cold, but my friends made me go to the GP and it was a chest infection. I still maintain I had a cold.

Whowouldfardelsbear Sat 27-Jul-13 10:11:31

Payment to see a doctor is a terrible idea. Here in NZ where there is state health care, you still need to pay around $50 (about 25 pound) to see a doctor. About $35 for a child visit. They recently made children under 6 free at our local surgery, though that is the discretion of the practice.

You also need to pay for prescriptions, though some are subsidized. I recently had to pay $20 for some cream for a bad rash for DD as it was not subsidized. I told the chemist how awful it must be not to have the money to buy the medicine your child needs (or to just jettison eating for that week).

The NHS and free GP visits are crucial to a civilized society if you ask me.

The only advantage is that I can get a same day appointment, and the GP does give me a lot more time than any in the UK ever did.

Stropzilla Sat 27-Jul-13 10:14:35

I like the idea of charging those who don't turn up, as sconeinsixtyseconds said a couple of posts up.

Damnautocorrect Sat 27-Jul-13 10:26:30

It will cost more in the long run when the nhs are picking up the tab for illnesses that have been left because you can't afford it.
They will also need to charge at a and e and every walk in clinic.
We don't get benefits but I couldn't afford it. It's a quarter of what I have to live off a week.

PoshPenny Sat 27-Jul-13 12:42:14

Hmmm. I'm not entirely against the idea, as some people do seem to go every week and they don't really need the Dr. Just so long as the chronically sick had a concession. Not very fair on those of us on low-ish incomes though.

However, I would expect to be seen punctually, have a reasonable length of consultation time, be listened to and involved in the process/proposed treatment rather than be talked down to and told what is best for me (or that I'm being silly/what do I expect) which is how it feels at the moment.

They'd probably be better sticking with the present system actually, people will rise up and start demanding value for money.

Sidge Sat 27-Jul-13 12:53:55

I think it's a terrible idea, as do the GPs I work with.

It would be nice to find a way of penalising those who don't turn up to appointments they have booked though. If people didn't waste so many GP and nurse appointments you wouldn't have to wait so long for a routine appointment.

TheCrackFox Sat 27-Jul-13 13:15:52

Last month my local surgery had 89 missed appointments and I would like to see a charge for people who waste the GPs time like this.

SconeInSixtySeconds Sat 27-Jul-13 13:22:27

Exactly crackfox 93 in our surgery last month, and our gps are great, they really do try and fit you in whenever they can.

It gives me the rage that three people a day (well more actually because of the weekends) just don't bother to show.

eurozammo Sat 27-Jul-13 13:30:44

I'm not wholly against it. I've lived in countries where there is a modest charge to see a dr (about a tenner, I recall) and even as a very poor student I could manage to pay when I really needed to go. You got more time with the dr too, so I felt that the appointment was more helpful - here, I pretty much always feel rushed.

I have GP friends who have discussed the problem of people taking up appointments when they don't need to see a dr. Some are just lonely. Some have chronic conditions that cannot be cured and won't accept that seeing the GP weekly will not change that. The upshot of this is that the people who really do need to be seen cannot get appointments. It is a very frustrating situation both for the dr and the patient who cannot get seen.

Bunbaker Sat 27-Jul-13 13:32:24

I'm amazed at the number of missed appointments. We had only one occasion when we had to miss an appointment, and that was because DD had been admitted to hospital. I still rang the surgery from the hospital to let them know.

daisychicken Sat 27-Jul-13 13:43:30

I hope we don't get charged to see our GP - I have a chronic condition so need so see my GP for new prescriptions/treatment as required (Im not a visit for the slightest thing person!) so would cost me a fortune plus I know lots who'd never see the GP due to the cost.

I'd much rather see a fine for missing an appt - whether GP or at the hospital. Perhaps people would think more about whether they really need to see someone if they know they will be fined for not turning up?

daisychicken Sat 27-Jul-13 13:50:03

Just to add to euro post - I'm happy to ask the advice of the person on the phone i.e. "I/dc have x, do we need to see the GP, nurse or can we get a prescription?"

Perhaps having a nurse answering the phone for spots would work?

I know some surgeries have someone phone you back but that isn't always convenient...... (Obv depends on what person is wanting to see GP for). Could something be combined with pharmacists? You can already ask advice (I have done for hayfever/veruccas for example) so perhaps more advice on what you need to see a GP for / pharmacist for etc might work??

Vickibee Sat 27-Jul-13 13:55:42

Dental treatment and eye test used to be free and we accept paying for those. I have a very complex prescription and paid £400 for y last pair.
I disagree with paying to see a GP. The NHS was set up to be free at the point of delivery. our practice tries to screen calls to see if treatment advice can be given on the phone for inor ailmets

Lonecatwithkitten Sat 27-Jul-13 13:55:58

I can see that charging for no shows will come in at some point. My practice had 215 missed appointments last month ( it is a super practice). That is almost one whole doctor so it is costing them a considerable amount.

NeverQuiteSure Sat 27-Jul-13 13:56:27

Hmmm, I'm not so sure there are that many people who go to their GP just for the fun of it. I can think of better days out.

When I had my breast abscess I saw a GP 3-4 times a week for 3 weeks before finally ending up in A&E. At £225 to £300 I have wanted a bloody refund!

hermioneweasley Sat 27-Jul-13 14:00:32

I pay more than enough into the system already, thanks.

Charge/penalise people who don't turn up or are time wasters.

lljkk Sat 27-Jul-13 15:26:53

People who don't turn up are often the most vulnerable, though, the ones with the fewest life coping skills and most of all, the ones who have the least money. 90% of them won't have £25 to pay for not turning up.

What you could do is demand a deposit when the appointment is booked, say £10. To be refunded when the person turned up. The most vulnerable wouldn't even have £10 though.

I am pretty sure the NHS is the only health care system that is truly free at point of delivery, I'm not sure it's fair to say that every other health care system in the world is uncivilised etc.

GlobalWarning Sat 27-Jul-13 15:32:29

My mum went to the doctors a year ago with bowel pain. They misdiagnosed her and a year on she has stage 4 cancer with no hope of a cure. If £25 means people are thoroughly looked at, taken seriously then I would pay. But GPs have a duty of care and this should happen anyway. It would also put people off going to the doctors, it's a huge sum for some people.

Floralnomad Sat 27-Jul-13 15:38:08

At our GP there are a limited number of pre bookable appts each day and the rest can be booked on the day . If you fail to turn up to a pre booked appt they ban ou from pre booking in future so you have to ring in the morning to see if you can get in , that seems fair enough to me . They have a sign up to say how many appts are missed each month and last month so many were missed it was a whole day and a half of one nurse and one dr . I really think charging would be the start of a slippery slope.

JuliaScurr Sat 27-Jul-13 15:44:22

God, Global I'm very sorry to hear about your mum

GlobalWarning Sat 27-Jul-13 15:45:34

Thank you Julia

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