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No sheilding letter. Gp receptionist says i should have one but never received

β€’33 Replies

When sheilding originally started my asthma was well controlled, my son was sheilding(cystic fibrosis) gp sent me a sheilding letter as his primary carer(he just printed it.

End of may my asthma flared(quite usual) I was given 2 or 3 courses of steroids from GP, 1 from out of hours. Had 2 trips to A&E 1 with another course and a magnesium infusion. Still didnt clear so gp sent me back to hospital, another lot of magnesium, 2 days on oxygen, 3 days of nebs then sent home with a 14 day steroid course and a good wean. Still needed another short course with wean after that but back under control now.

When i was in A&E the second time i was due back at work a few days later( they had allowed the those just vunerable to stay off until covid measures were in place) i work at an opticians. I called the gp the next day to request a sick note, they refused and said i was to sheild and sent me another letter.

This time round work assumed i was sheilding and sent me home but ive still not had the letter, also didnt get the october one that my son had. Ive managed to only speak to gp receptionist who says the would have added me to sheilding list and that i will get a letter. Work have asked to see it and im really worried. Saying that i originally requested to keep working as my asthma is better controoled but they wont allow it.

my regular medication is a mart regime with symbicort 200/6 twice morning and evening, montelukast and beconase. Only use as a releiver a few times a week or after exercise or walking if its vwry cold out.

Have the surgery given me wrong advice and if not how do i get a sheilding letter.

Im not under specialist but had a letter saying i should have breathing test but im on a long list thanks to covid. Ive requested a refferal before as its quite normal for my asthma to be stuborn, gp always uses my cf gene carrier status as an excuse πŸ˜‚

33 Replies

I was going to say to maybe ask for a GP call rather than discussing it with the receptionist....but if they're refusing to refer you then perhaps they won't be any help either? πŸ€¦β€β™€οΈ

My letter has literally only arrived today (dated 7th Jan and allegedly 1st class post....) although had the email on 7th and same in October, the email followed by letter. So it does sound as if you're not on the CEV list officially. Originally GPs could add patients - you'd hope they still could.....but I'm afraid I don't know what the answer is if they can't. Questions like this would actually be useful at the press briefings rather than the drivel that both the public and the press ask!

Maybe try your actual GP first and then Asthma UK if not? They might be able to think of a what to do. Actually maybe phone them first and discuss referral - then speak to GP and (assuming they think referral should happen) tell them AUK have said....!

I agree with twinkly29. You need to speak with gp. It doesn’t sound like you in list for shielding. I have had emails and letters. Again it was possible for gp to add you to the list but don’t know now.

If it is agreed not able to work but gp can’t place you on shielding list for some reason ask gp to provide a sick note dated back from when you sent home from optician until date official shielding ends (at the moment) 21 February. That way you are covered with work.

Hope all gets sorted on Monday.

lucie982 in reply to Bevvy

Sorry should have mentioned im in Wales so advice is a little different i think 7th Feb and we dont have the email service. Theyve only just set up a txt alert service here. Throughout my issues the first time i spoke/saw gp was the day i was addmitted. Other than that i spoke to their pharmicist every time was a bit rubbish care in all. Ill ask receptionist if shes able to allow an appointment with anyone otherwise ill have to try the econsult. Spoke to asthma uk nurse during my flare they felt my steroid dose wasnt high enough but pharmicist wouldnt budge. I just need to be able to assure work i can return safely

I work in a GPs' surgery. This time around, patients are coded on their records by the GPs, and that is what triggers the shielding (note spelling! 😘) letters. It is possible you have not been coded correctly on the system. I would try to get a telephone consultation with your GP rather than the receptionist, and ask.

One thing the receptionists can help with though, is checking that they have your mobile number, and your postal and email addresses correct on your record and also on the Spine, especially if you have moved house recently, but even if you haven't. They'll know what that means! Good luck! πŸ˜€

HiDo you think that there may have been some confusion at your GP surgery with your sons letters being addressed to you?



lucie982 in reply to Pipsqueak77

yes this is my thoughts exactly. Dont think the receptionist even requested my sick note. Hospital consultant did say i should talk to gp about when i should return to work but didnt specifically mention sheilding. just said with the amount of pred my immune system would be very low. Ill admit i was very unwell at the time, spoke to occupational health at work when sheilding ended and they wernt happy with my change in meds and had to take additional leave.

Im not using titropium anymore(caused awful palpitations) only using mart rescue once or twice a day(allowed 4) or 8 with a review and feel well unless out in cold air.

Think ill call monday and use econsult if i cant get to speak to anyone.

I'd have thought CF trumped asthma. There must be some mix up in the system as you should be shielding in order to protect your son. I'd phone his GP and ask for guidance, this may trigger a letter. They may think you haven't stopped shielding. I'm in Scotland and I got a text from the Scottish Government on the 4th, the day things changed for us, telling me of the changes. My letter came through on the following Saturday (dated the 4th). Royal Mail are having problems as they've been a bit lax in their approach to Covid 19 and now the chickens are coming home to roost. This may explain why everyones mail is a bit hit & miss at the moment.

Good luck!

In England, the guidelines say those living with CEV individuals don't need to shield as well. But it does sound like there's been some confusion as to shielding initially (when perhaps those living with the CEV were advised to before guidance was in place or updated) and then perhaps needing to be added in her own right but maybe it not being actioned correctly.

Initially in Scotland, people living with CEV people were told to shield, the thinking behind this was if the person went to work, caught Covid and then brought it home, the at risk person could catch it before the first person realised they had it. I'm now thinking that at times politics & the economy have got the edge over health.

lucie982 in reply to Jimmy-Lyden

Hes super well so doesnt need to sheild, his letter has been sent in error consultant agreed in july he wouldnt be affected. The day the gp finally agreed to my face to face and admitted me to hospital he said " with you being a cf gene carrier there must be a link to why you get so unwell" i was in a right state and shot him down with "ive had asthma 20years just treat it" a fewbyears back i was really unwell and they thought i might have permanent lung damage but turnes out to just be massive inflammation showing on an xray that calmed after months of pred, still didnt get a refferal mind so suppose its common

Jimmy-Lyden in reply to lucie982

That's really good news about your son, let's hope it stays that way. Yes, they get a bit overeager sometimes. At one point someone at the hospital thought I had some hellish lung condition, the name of which escapes me, and had me on Prednisolone for 7 months... not great when you're heading out to Texas for a few weeks. It turned out I didn't. My problems, which I deduced 9 years later, were mainly caused by the vans I was driving and their maintenance regime (pollen filters weren't changed. It wasn't in the schedule). Anyway, good luck to you & your son. Let's hope you don't need it.

Hi , similar situation really hospitalised twice Nov / Dec had no letter , am working roughly 2 days home, 3 at work. I think they assume as govt advice is work from home, that should suffice, however some roles you can't work from home, or certain employer s need convincing with evidence. Go to GP direct, have you sent me a shielding letter, because I haven't received one of you have?

Try not to worry the letters are being sent out. I received my text message as soon as lockdown was announced but only got my sheilding letter yesterday. My husband had the text and got an email plus the letter yesterday. Don't know why I don't get the emails.

I have only just had my letter. Sometimes there’s quite a delay. Have you had an email?

not sure if wales have the email service yet 🀞

Oh I see. I’m sure you will get the letter soon. Did you have a letter before did you say? If you did could you use it in the meantime as if you had one before it will show you had to shield and will have to again ?

my sheilding letter was sent from the gp surgery when i requested a sick note. I dont think they added me to the list properly and i dont even know if my Asthma at the time would have put me in that severe group, i take a mederate steroid dose Mart regeime but had about 5 or 6 courses of steroid and 1 hospital admission during lockdown. Previously it had been well controlled for about 18mnths so i certainly wouldnt have been on the original list. My employer does need to see the new letter but wont allow me to return unless the gp confirms im not now in the sheilding group. Its so hard getting past receptionists as the gps are so understandably busy

twinkly29 in reply to lucie982

If you can't get past the receptionist, contact the practice manager. What you've just written above is so clear and you just need to know either way for work. If reception are not helpful the practice manager can hopefully sort it. Yes GPs are busy but you're as important as anyone else. And good luck!

Do you have a facility to email your names GP? You can make it clear on the email that it is for sight of the GP and copy to practice manager.

no not at all, still a case of appealing to whoever reads its better nature. I keep copies and my employer will be able to see them to prove ive tried to get clarification πŸ˜” if i loose pay (have to pay back wages) i wont be happy but at very least ive kept safe i suppose

How about writing to your GP by Snail Mail? Or asking to speak to your GP β€˜s secretary? Feels like it’s pretty hard work for patients to make contact with their own doctor.

Pipsqueak77 in reply to lucie982


As twinkly29 says above.. you have set out very clearly what you need from your GP... can you not just econsult that message to your surgery? It will then be passed on to whoever needs to deal with it. Either GP or admin to get something to you for your employer.

I would not be happy to sit around at home and loose wages because of an inept GP surgery! It’s really not acceptable....

Take care 😊

lucie982 in reply to Pipsqueak77

yes ive used econsult this time. Hopefully they can give me an definitive answer. I know sometimes the receptionists are telling me only to their best knowledge 🀞

Pipsqueak77 in reply to lucie982


Sounds a good plan..! 🀞 you get a sensible answer this time!!

Take care πŸ‘πŸ˜Š

lucie982 in reply to Pipsqueak77

You too 😊 and thanks so much for your advice, this forum was my lifeline back in the summer. My asthma can be so difficult to get under control but once it is i have such good periods and this forum has always helped me feel confident to get past the anxiety of it all.

lucie982 in reply to Pipsqueak77

Still no sensible answer πŸ˜‚ got a generic reply about being added to a clincians list to check if i should be sheilding and that they will send me a letter if i should. They must be screening there econsults too x still waiting for employer to call so i can explain in detail.

Pipsqueak77 in reply to lucie982


Well at least you have made some headway.. keep the reply so you have proof if they don’t get back to you.

But all should be well if they think you need to shield...🀞

Take care πŸ‘

Hi lucie892,

I had this before. Just book an appointment with the doctor. If the receptionist ask why tell them it's about your asthma.

Then talk directly with a doctor.

This is what I had to do.

All the best.

Hi did you manage speak to your Gp? Yes you need to just bypass the receptionists ask to speak to GP for appointment . I have had this the last 2 weeks. Work wanted me back without anything written. Managed to get a GP appointment, they said they can't write any shielding letters as the policy has changed. The GP was very nice said that they will sort something out today. The surgery have done me a NHS shielding letter. Hope you get help also.

lucie982 in reply to Jolu29

my gp must be like fortknoxx πŸ˜‚ even my econsult got me a generic reply. I hope my employers understanding and can action my holiday pay in the meantime just waiting on a call from them

Jolu29 in reply to lucie982

Hope u get it sorted, it did take lots calls trying get past the receptionist and some tears. The receptionists can tell you if you were added by the Gp, as I was added by the Asthma nurse originally they said I was on there. This doesn't help if you need it written. It's all down to coding GP said there is someone at surgery who does this, the one at our surgery was off. Think there were lots of people like me who hadn't had there shielding letters.

lucie982 in reply to Jolu29

receptionist did say that but im wondering if theyre working from home and unable to this information. i honestly dont see my asthma as being severe, i just have severe attacks a lot less now than previously.

Update:i do not need to sheild 😊 never did get past the receptionsit and even had an email stating i was never asked to sheild and never received a letter πŸ€”

after giving them a running order of dates where i requested a sick note, had telephone consults, when my sister came to collect a sick not and was given a sheilding letter and when i eventually managed to get a face to face and was from there admitted to hospital to then be told. I was asked to sheild as i was on steroids but as im not now i do not need to sheild. It really shocks me that even now they can not manage simple administration tasks. I beleive a sick note would have been more acceptable at the time and they just couldnt be bothered. During my flare when i was super anxious id questioned leaving that surgery, the care then seemed awful but thought perhaps my emotions took over a little. How wrong was i

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