Sick man unable to get GP appointment despite making 100 calls

Latest health news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter
Latest health news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter
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A sick man has been unable to get an appointment to see a GP despite calling his surgery more than 100 times.

Jeff Bayly, 54, began calling the Elizabeth Courtauld Surgery in Halstead, Essex, about an ongoing cough last week.

Despite making more than 100 calls last Tuesday and Wednesday he was told there were no appointments available.

Mr Bayly, of Halstead, Essex, said: “It really is impossible to get a booking or to see a doctor. It is nothing short of ridiculous.

“I work nights so I am getting up after two hours’ sleep to sit on the phone for an hour getting nowhere.

“Personally I think the whole system needs looking at. It is ridiculous and it is quite clear that this system doesn’t work.

“I know this is a country-wide issue and everyone has the same problem but we are in a situation where it is impossible to see your local doctor.

“At half past eight every morning it is like a rat race. I have actually given up now and decided I will just get by, but that is not how it should be.”

David Shedden, practice manager at the surgery, said changes had been made to the booking system, but declined to reveal what they were.

He said: “The Elizabeth Courtauld Surgery has a high volume of telephone calls and requests for appointments. We have made changes to our systems to try to meet escalating demand.

“Along with the rest of the NHS we are under great pressure.”