Survey Sees Majority of UK Patients Waiting Two Days for GP Appointment

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22nd March 2013 15:53 - Health


A report titled ‘Primary Care: Access Denied?’ by the Patients Association, based on three surveys which gathered 3,076 responses, has discovered some unsettling facts about health care in Britain.

Six in ten survey respondents (60.5%) reported not being able to see a GP for at least two days, while 83.8% waited for more than 24 hours. Furthermore, 57.4% said the process of booking an appointment was either "very difficult" or "could have been easier".

The result is that nearly 40% of working-age Britons claim they often have to take time off work to see a GP because appointments are so difficult to get and are offered at inconvenient times.

In addition, almost 80% of the surveyants said they lack confidence in out-of-hours services, while 79.2% stated they either would not feel safe (or did not know if they would) relying on NHS out-of-hours services if they had a potentially urgent medical problem.

It was also discovered that 54.8% of surveyants were not satisfied with their experience of out-of-hours care in the previous two years, and over two-thirds would not feel confident using walk-in centres or the NHS Direct telephone advice line.

The findings run in stark contrast to the Coalition Government’s attempts to enforce the NHS's £20 billion cost-cutting efficiency drive.

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