Doctors & The Flu Jab

If the community chats on Facebook are anything to go by, people really HATE the doctors lately. I totally appreciate that is an epidemic of lack of funding in our NHS, I understand firsthand as I have friends within the NHS that the hours are long and the gratitude is lacking but MY GOD, do the receptionists at the doctors surgery have to be so rude?!

Ringing for an appointment is like facing the firing squad, god help you if you answer ‘is it an emergency?’ with a pause, they’ll jump on you like a fly on sh*t if you ring before 9am. We are advised if we need an ’emergency on the day’ appointment to ring at 8am for the best chance of a cancellation but if you are so lucky to get through after being number 89 in the queue, you will face an interrogation before you are even offered an appointment.

Following Frankie’s operation, we were meant to have a follow up appointment which was cancelled (& still hasn’t been rebooked by the hospital), but as everything has been healing fine we haven’t had a need to visit but last week I noticed that his stitches looked a little sore and was worried they were infected, so I rung the doctors at 8:07am to be told I was number 11 in the queue. We were on our way out and had to pass the doctors anyway so I thought we would just pop in instead of hanging around on the phone.

We had also received letters in the post with our flu vaccination dates on, which we were both unfortunately away for & I had received a further letter asking us to rebook it so I grabbed that too to book at the same time. Well, you would of thought that my sole job in life that day was to cause them as much distress as possible not to,

  1. Make an appointment to check a post-op scar
  2. Ask when the next flu vaccination date was for myself
  3. Book an appointment AS REQUESTED for Frankie’s flu vaccination

After waiting and watching the gaggle of receptionists catch up on last night’s episode of The Cry and make their tea for 15 minutes along with a line of people, we finally got called over by a narky receptionist who then asked me to hold on whilst she continued to type for a further 5 minutes followed by asking me to ‘control my toddler’, who was singing whilst sitting down on the benches clapping his hands whilst being ‘awwed’ at by an elderly couple, hardly swinging from the halogen lights.

Firstly, I asked to make an appointment to check out his scar after explaining he had a recent op etc etc. ‘No appointments available until the following week’, ‘fair enough can I make an appointment on Thursday or Friday as I am not at work?’ ‘None available..’ ‘Right, following week?’ ‘We have nothing until Thursday 22nd November’, o..k.. ‘Booked!’ ‘Can I also make that a double appointment as unfortunately we were away for his flu vaccination?’ ‘No you need to ring back up to re-book that, I have a queue’.. Uhm, ‘but I am standing right here?’ Can you just you know extend the appointment you have open on your screen at the very minute in time? ‘I am afraid you will need to ring back up to make an appointment’. *all whilst staring at the screen, not me*.. Ok then.. ‘No problem will do, I would also like…’ ‘I’m very sorry but I do have a queue, as I just explained you will have to ring up to further your appointments, next please’. *over strolls the next person*

If we didn’t have a class to get to, I would of stood there until she made my pissing appointment! It took all my self control to get Frankie and calmly walk out of the surgery to get into my car and dial the doctors number from the car outside the doctors about 10ft from where the receptionist was sitting!! *number 5 in the call queue* another 10 minutes on hold, I finally got through, to the SAME receptionist I had just seen, who explained that it wasn’t possible to rebook a flu vaccination and I would need to come in on a date in November when the next ‘walk in day’ was on.

COULD SHE NOT OF JUST EXPLAINED THAT TO ME IN THE SURGERY I HAD JUST SPENT THE BEST PART OF HALF HOUR IN?!

Is it just my doctors surgery or is this nationwide?

I am not putting anyone down personally but MY GOD why was that experience so difficult?! I consider myself a patient person, but I am sure even Mother Teresa would lose her shit in that situation!

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