Off Topic Coronavirus

Discussion in 'Queens Park Rangers' started by Sooperhoop, Feb 8, 2020.

  1. sb_73

    sb_73 Well-Known Member

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    Here’s a good one, though I really hope it isn’t typical. Our GP practice has, apparently, the core objective of avoiding seeing any patients at all, ever. My wife has a medication review due, just routine stuff. They have just texted her to tell her to buy a blood pressure monitor, take her own measurements, and phone them in to the practice. No need to spell out the risk of mistakes let alone the breathtaking assumptions about what people can afford.

    As I say, I think (and sincerely hope) that this is extreme - our practice, which was great pre virus, has had a turnover of GPs and is now headed up by someone on the anxiety spectrum (according to mates in other local practices, which sadly we can’t switch to because it wouldn’t be fair on our mates. Plus I know how much they drink.....).

    We actually have a blood pressure monitor as I’m supposed to keep a check on mine (forget most of the time) and my wife is well capable of taking the measurement. I have suggested that she phones them and says her BP is 347 over 10, to see how they can avoid actually seeing her in those circumstances.

    Mind you, if you can take your own measurements, soon we will have official DIY diagnoses and will be able to write our own prescriptions, which might be fun.
     
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  2. rangercol

    rangercol Well-Known Member

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    Very much the exception to the rule mate.
     
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  3. rangercol

    rangercol Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely ridiculous.
    Our GP surgery is only allowing telephone appointments.
    I'm trying for one today and will report back. I suspect that the receptionist will cross examine me to determine whether she thinks I'm worthy of the doctor's time.
    I'm planning to mention brain aneurysms running in our family to guage the response ( I do need to speak to the doc about this, as I'm long overdue my bi-annual check).
     
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  4. YorkshireHoopster

    YorkshireHoopster Well-Known Member

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    Reasoned research? What like Butt Huber?
     
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  5. Woodyhoopleson

    Woodyhoopleson Well-Known Member

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    Research, listening, evaluating, call it what you like. I’m not saying anything radical.
     
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  6. rangercol

    rangercol Well-Known Member

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    As promised, here's my report.
    I phoned the surgery at midday to ask for a telephone appointment with my GP this afternoon. I already knew that he was in and that the surgery are only allowing telephone appointments in the first instance.
    I suffer from sinusitis and clogged up ears and have been in quite a lot of pain over the last few weeks with a symptom similar to the pressure pain after travelling on a plane.
    I also haven't had a blood pressure check this year and it's the only early warning for me concerning a brain aneurysm which runs in the family.
    The receptionist was very helpful and the call was arranged.
    I've just got off the phone.
    Apparently, I need to buy my own blood pressure kit, although the nurse will do it if I want to risk a visit.
    The doc normally does it because of my circumstances but I can't see him for this.
    They're not clearing ears, so I have to get it done privately which will be around 60 quid!
    The blood pressure kit will be around 15 to 20 quid.
    He said he recommended that I have the seasonal flu jab, as at my age I don't want to get seasonal flu at the same time as Covid.
    Unfortunately, he can't guarantee that there'll be any of the vaccine left on the NHS after all the others have been done.
    This will cost around 15 quid at a participating pharmacy.
    The GPs will only see someone with a serious sounding problem. Let's hope everyone can properly describe their symptoms eh?
    Do I get a refund on my national insurance payments?
     
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  7. Stroller

    Stroller Well-Known Member

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    You should certainly get yourself a blood pressure kit anyway, Col. Not sure what you'd get for twenty quid, though - mine cost £40.

    I had a follow-up call with my GP yesterday and have been given a second course of antibiotics. I've also got to get some blood tests done and a chest x-ray
     
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  8. Goldhawk-Road

    Goldhawk-Road Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like some progress, Col. Taking blood pressure is straightforward. I've been doing mine for about three years now. Saves a lot of visits to the surgery and apparently readings are more accurate at home where you are relaxed, so long as you take them at the same time each day.
     
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  9. sb_73

    sb_73 Well-Known Member

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    This is not looking good at all, is it?
    So many things wrong with this that I don’t know where to start. This is not a primary care service.
    Sympathies with the sinusitis. I get a sinus infection, usually as part of a cold, every couple of years, and like a bastard it normally coincides with some long haul flying. Really painful and guaranteed to put me in a bad mood. Usually take pain killers for it.
    Of course Col is capable of taking his own blood pressure, but that’s not really the point. If this is now standard practice some people will not be able to take an accurate reading, and many won’t be able to afford a BP monitor (you will get a **** one for £20 anyway, mine was nearer £60). The cloak of COVID is covering some real changes to fundamental public services. Don’t get me started on education.
     
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  10. Goldhawk-Road

    Goldhawk-Road Well-Known Member

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    I bought a £34 job from Amazon. Here, if Col's interested

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B003CYK6FA/?tag=not606-21

    It works well. For £60, it must be gold plated. But you make a fair point that not everyone can afford to go out and buy one. People on benefits could take a loan of one from surgery. Of course, those few who cannot take their blood pressure must come into surgery. But if people can do their own, it seems to me it takes away unnecessary time from doctors and nurses. The more we can do that, and leave time free for patients who really need access to the professionals, the better I would say
     
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  11. rangercol

    rangercol Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Goldie. It was the Omron one that the GP recommended. He was a bit out with his price estimate.
    Makes sense for me to get one and he's given me the range of readings I should be getting.
    Cheers.
     
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  12. rangercol

    rangercol Well-Known Member

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    It is worrying, I agree.
     
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  13. qprbeth

    qprbeth Wicked Witch of West12
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    Really worrying. I am not sure where the problem is:-
    Money from government
    The inherent mental attitude of the GP attitude.
    The restrictions imposed on us all.
    Really not understanding this
     
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  14. Sooperhoop

    Sooperhoop Well-Known Member

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    If you are getting a BP monitor you should avoid the wrist attached version as my GP said they are notoriously unreliable. One that attaches to the upper arm so it is reading on the same level as your heart is the recommended version. Any GP recommending one should tell you which one is safest but many don't...
     
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  15. Steelmonkey

    Steelmonkey Well-Known Member

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    I've not had call to see my GP for years, and neiher had the missus until recently.

    She has been seen twice by the GP, has been into the surgery two or three times to have bloods taken for various tests, the GP has called her every two or three weeks and actually wrote to her last week to come in for more blood tests as she'd discovered something amongst her other long-Covid patients and wanted to check it out - turns out that one of the symptoms of long-Covid is a depletion of your iron reserves, so the wife is now on an intensive course of iron supliments so hoping this will help her regain some of her strength. The tests also showed low levels of vitamin B12. She'd never had an issue with iron before, so it's definately something new, along with the other patients at our surgery. The wife has done a bit of research, and lack of iron can cause some of the muscle twitching that she experiences regularly.

    Another interesting factor to come out of this is that if you a generally low on iron, it seems you are more susceptible to severe symptoms of Covid if you are unlucky enough to catch it....

    IMG-20201015-WA0000.jpg
     
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  16. rangercol

    rangercol Well-Known Member

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    Yep, cheers mate.
    The GP told me which one to get and which make and model.
     
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  17. Sooperhoop

    Sooperhoop Well-Known Member

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    Don't attach it whilst watching the Rs, you might go off the scale...<laugh>
     
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  18. sb_73

    sb_73 Well-Known Member

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    Well, it seems that Goldie’s perspective is the one that is gaining traction. Just had a long chat with my GP neighbour and asked him about this stuff.
    - DIY blood pressure. Increasingly common practice apparently. He justified it by saying his practice has 800 patients on hypertension meds, if they had them all in the practice becomes a much bigger COVID hub than any pub. Plus the stuff about better readings at home etc. When pressed (gently, he’s my mate) he agreed that the latter is iffy, and doctors automatically adjust ‘doctors office’ BP readings. He also agreed that there were some patients that this would be wholly inappropriate for and that no one asks whether the patients can afford it.
    - ear cleaning. Not been done for a year, since pre COVID, because they are not reimbursed for it. Seems like an unannounced cut.
    - flu jabs - he would give anyone he thought needed it a jab, regardless of age.

    The nature of primary care is changing by stealth. Goldie’s perspective of ‘protect the professionals’ is of course a valid view, but it’s happening in a very opaque way.

    My mate retrained (from a biomedical background) at his own expense to become a GP in his 30s, isn’t particularly happy with the trend, and was very explicit that it is surreptitious and non transparent. But as a partner in a small business, which is what GP practices are, he, understandably, rolls with the punches.

    I am all for a big public debate on the NHS, which I think needs a big rethink (it has been cruelly exposed by the virus) especially on the funding side. But generations have an expectation of cradle to grave 100% care and feel that they have paid for it through taxation. If this is going to change, fine, but do it openly.
     
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  19. rangercol

    rangercol Well-Known Member

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    On ear clearing, our practice fazed out the old water jet syringing and introduced the vacuum method, which basically sucks out the wax, so long as it's been sufficiently softened.
    I'm now wondering whether my GP meant that they no longer do it full stop, although he did appear to mean it was because of covid.
    I'll report back as to the cost of getting it done privately.
     
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  20. sb_73

    sb_73 Well-Known Member

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    I should add that my neighbour was scathing about the behaviour of many practices. Apparently there have been 26 million fewer GP consultations this year compared to last. His practice has done 5000 more, because they leapt on phone and video consultations early. He does 60-70 a day, much more than face to face meetings, but agrees that you have to be really up on how to talk to people to understand their symptoms (as you alluded to above Col) to know who needs to be called in. He also said that complaints are going up massively, as people are given what they need rather than what they want.
     
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    Last edited: Oct 16, 2020
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