Christopher Hunter cehunter at gb-x.org
Sun Oct 19 19:56:44 UTC 2014

On 19/10/14 13:45, Andrew Black wrote:
> Can we return to the original topic.   I asserted that faxes are 
> useful for communicate with doctors etc when I am dealing with a 
> chronically ill parent and living 1.5 hours journey away.  If you know 
> the right person to talk to telephone is best, but GPs are hard to get 
> hold of. Receptionist often don't feel able to talk to you.
> One clinic was great at communicating by email - not detailed medical 
> stuff but just the practicalities of appointments.
> I am not in a position to recommend whether Fax, email, post, carrier 
> pigeons is more or less secure and which the NHS should use. Just I am 
> trying to  do the best I can for relatives with at least pain in short 
> term.
> If MI5/6 or NSA want to intercept my appointment dates I am not too 
> concerned.
When I was incapacitated a few years ago, both my Wife and my Father has 
no issue whatsoever in getting to talk to my GP.  In some instances, 
they would be asked to call back at a pre-arranged time, when my GP was 
between patients or between clinics.  In all cases they were treated 
with polite, helpful respect and my GP provided excellent support.

If any aspect of the service from the GP dealing with your parent is any 
less than perfect you should consider writing (in the first instance) a 
registered letter to the GP - with a copy to the Local Health Authority 
- detailing your dissatisfaction with the GP and explaining that you're 
doing this on behalf of your infirm parent.

This usually elicits a form reply from the LHA and a scribbled note of 
apology from the GP.  However, you should find that things change 
radically - you will be treated quite differently by the receptionists 
and by the GP, with return phone calls at times convenient to you, 
medical details discussed openly with you and your advice sought on the 
best options for your parent.

This is probably the only instance in which it pays to complain to the NHS!


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