Disgusted with GP Surgery

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Dragonfly17
Dragonfly17 Member Posts: 47
edited 29. Oct 2018, 07:26 in Living with Arthritis archive
Am really mad with my GP surgery. GP gave me referral to local leisure centre for water exercises and Tai Chi classes to help ease pain of my RA. Went for induction and my blood pressure was 180/104 and was told I needed GP to sign an additional letter saying it was okay for me to participate in these low level exercises. Took letter to surgery and left it will them requesting signature of GP - though expected to be asked for make appointment because BP was so high. Instead got telephone call telling me I needed to pay £25 for doctor to sign letter!!! Has anyone heard anything like it. I explained why I needed it after docs referral to help with RA but they just said it was a private matter and had to pay. Told them to forget it and that I thought doctor would have been more concerned by BP was so high rather then getting £25 off me - they had nothing to say. I am absolutely disgusted.

Comments

  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Dragonfly, please excuse a very brief reply. I'm almost out of battery.

    The important thing here is your very high BP. Please book in to see your GP about it.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello again, dragonfly.

    The longer version of what I would have written if I'd had the battery life last night is broadly in agreement with Grace111. I, too, think this is probably a bit misunderstanding with the receptionist.

    At first I was surprised and delighted for you that your GP had referred you to a fitness centre, presumably as the wait would be long for hydro at whichever local hospital does it. I was also impressed by the fitness centre for being so on the ball with the BP test.

    The rest? Well, it's normal for GPs to charge for any letters they write on out behalf other than NHS ones ie letters saying we are fit to undertake an activity or to clarify matters when we go abroad. After all, these things take up valuable time which they could be spending with patients. A friend was charged recently when he decided to resume skydiving. I should have been charged when I began Riding for the Disabled but my GP waived the fee.

    I'm guessing that your receptionist / practice manager saw that this came under such a heading and didn't realise that a different system operated when you were actually referred by the GP though I suppose it might not. £25 is not much to pay for a course of water therapy and Tai Chi.

    It's possible your GP had no idea of the contents of the form (and therefore of your high BP). Receptionists / practice managers are not medically trained and couldn't advise patients on what to do.

    The main thing, as I said, is your BP. It might only have been so high due to 'white coat syndrome' ie fear of having it done but it does need checking. Hopefully, the high scores were just a one-off but, if not, you'll need some medication for it, or more medication if you already take some.

    We all want those connected with the medical profession to look out for us but, sadly, they are all very overworked so it's usually up to us to look out for ourselves. Do get yours checked and please let us know how it goes and how, hopefully, the classes go too.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    There could be a mis-understanding here which needs sorting out but that is a very high BP reading which needs addressing first. I take BP medication thanks to humira (the meds give with one hand and give more with the other. :roll: ). DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,655
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I think the GP hasn't even seen the letter yet to be honest and agree with everyone else that you must make an appointment with him/her.

    Hope you can get your appointment very soon and the Dr sorts you out. ((()))

    Toni x
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    How are you, dragonfly? I think we're all a tad nattered about you. Have you seen the GP about your BP? Did you know you can buy a very cheap (ours was £10) BP monitor from most local chemists? They're not very accurate but they do enable you to keep an eye on it if it's playing up.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • Dragonfly17
    Dragonfly17 Member Posts: 47
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Sticky, I have a BP machine and have been taking my pressure and it is still high but much lower than on the paperwork it's now 154/79. I have made an appointment to see my GP but could not get in until Friday next week! I shall continue to take BP readings daily until I see him so he has an overall picture of what is going on.
    Spoke to Rheumy Nurse about signing the paperwork but she is unable to - much as I expected, not her area.
    Just a wait and see situation now.
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    That sounds much better and and a good plan to boot so thanks for the update.

    No, I don't think this is a rheumatology problem either so your nurse wouldn't be able to deal with it. I do still think though that your GP is probably blissfully unaware of it all.

    Thanks again and do keep us in the loop.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • Dragonfly17
    Dragonfly17 Member Posts: 47
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    You were right Sticky, saw GP today he was not aware of what had gone on re letter and he happily signed it whilst I was with him and I didn't have to pay anything!!
    I had taken readings of my BP over the last week which he looked at and he agreed there was a problem and I am now on yet another medication; let's hope this sorts things.
    Thanks all for your info and advice.
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Oh good and thank you so much for telling us :D I do like happy endings t115006
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I am pleased you got the letter thing sorted out and I hope the new BP medication is more effective than the old. I was swapped from Amlodipine to Ramipril which is working better for me. My husband was also taken off Amlodipine, it caused his legs to swell and gave him joint pain. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • Dragonfly17
    Dragonfly17 Member Posts: 47
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi DD, I had the same problem with Amlodipine with the swelling of my legs so was put on Ramipril. Now taking 10g of Ramipril and a water pill has now been added, so far am getting up twice in the night to go to loo, hope it settles down, cos its a nuisance having interrupted sleep when I have only just managed to get a full 5 hours - and that has taken over a year to achieve!
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I take 10mgs ramipril too but I've always regarded the twice nightly loo visits as the price for having children rather than the BP meds.

    I, too, was started on amlodipine. I think it's regarded as the drug with fewest side-effects but the swollen ankles are one of them and I just couldn't get my socks on.

    I hope things settle down for you soon.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright