Any Advice Appreciated Regarding Obta... - British Lung Foun...

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Any Advice Appreciated Regarding Obtaining a Letter From Doctor Regarding Flying

anng18 profile image

Hi All,

I requested a letter in June from my doctor, asking for an exemption from wearing a mask, to enable me to fly to Malta. The trip was not for a holiday, but to obtain a Maltese passport for my husband, who had just received citizenship via birthright. (That process took years) Malta house in London was not accepting any appointments and even now, whilst he is on a waiting list, recommend that he goes to Malta. Once he has received a passport, I can apply, as his wife, for Maltese citizenship, which again, is better to do in Malta, rather than wait for an appointment with Malta House.

Having double checked with the airlines, as requested by the medical secretary, and contacted her via e-mail 3 weeks ago, I rung her this morning, only to be told the GPs refuse to write a letter giving anyone exemption from wearing a mask, regardless of reason or purpose. My husband rung the airlines again and was told it was my human rights to receive this letter and the Dr. is breaking the law by not allowing me to fly.

Has anyone else had a similar experience or found an alternative solution?

19 Replies

If this is urgent, and you have a little spare cash, might be worth finding a doctor in your area, who does private work as well as NHS, and see if he/she would do a private letter for you.

anng18 profile image
anng18 in reply to SORRELHIPPO

Thank you Sorrel.

Any ideas on how to find a private GP - internet keeps coming up with health insurance!

Kristicats profile image
Kristicats in reply to anng18

Many private hospitals have private Gps and appointments.

SORRELHIPPO profile image
SORRELHIPPO in reply to anng18

My large local pharmacy has a private doctor on tap, mainly Covid Testing these days, but I think he might do this sort of letter.

All I can suggest is to seek out a private GP. I would if I were you/he. I'd pay on a credit card to spread the cost, then pay back half off very soon after appointment and the other half before the next due statement. Good luck. Peege

PS I dont know what their problem is, they always charge for letters anyway. Perhaps they're worried you'd sue if hubby picks up covid.

Thanks Peege,Any ideas on how to?

If you are on Facebook you can look in local area for private doctors. If not on Facebook try putting home area eg leeds private doctors….. in search engine.To be fair am not surprised in the slightest that gp is saying no. It can be hard enough to get other letters from gp. Even if paying. Gp is not going to see your request as necessary am afraid.

Am not impressed with airline saying “is a breach of human rights”. That is a very flippant remark. Plus most airlines would not be happy (even with letter) about you not wearing a mask. Lots of articles in news about American Airlines throwing people off flights because young children not wearing face mask and only just 2yrs old.

Maybe you need to practice wearing a mask and searching for one you can tolerate….. ??

anng18 profile image
anng18 in reply to Bevvy

I've tried many, including the visa and cannot tolerate one for more than a few minutes. As such, I don't go anywhere., unless I can go in for one minute and disappear again. I appreciate what you say about the GPs, but this was via a medical secretary and has been going on since June. Why she just didn't say they won't do it in the first place, I don't know. I do think GPs have been very insulted over the last few weeks (new health secretary) and think they are may be rebelling - I can't say I blame them.

Caspiana profile image
Caspiana in reply to anng18

Hi anng,

Do you have trouble wearing the mask on exertion or even when you are still?

anng18 profile image
anng18 in reply to Caspiana

Hi Caspiana,Yes, I have problems even when I am still. (Gold band D -COPD - emphysema) Given up with the aeroplane Idea, as I don't think I'd make it through the airport. The plane would probably be better, but I'm leaving it for now.

Perhaps contact respiratory nurse

anng18 profile image
anng18 in reply to Patk1

Maybe, but she's nearly as difficult to get hold of as the Dr.. I haven't spoken to a doctor, just the medical secretary. It makes me laugh when they say to contact them if you start an antibiotic/steroid course - I'd be in hospital if I waited! Normally tell them online when I put a repeat prescription in.

Patk1 profile image
Patk1 in reply to anng18

Just a thought - ive remembered - i rang specialist secretary tellling her i needed brief note detailing abc,by a date.she happily obliged x

I am sorry but I do not see what the emergency is and can understand why you would be refused a letter. Having someone in an enclosed space such as a plane would endanger other passengers and crew. It is not rocket science and unfair on everyone else - nobody is comfortable wearing a mask for a few hours. I myself have severe respiratory problems and on occasions have had to wear a mask alongside an exempt badge out of respect for others. Have patience and wait until it can be sorted in London.

I appreciate your thoughts on this matter, Lungs, but part of the urgency to resolve the issue is to do with health and age. I've noticed quite a few people, who were also shielding on this site, have been able to recommence a relatively normal life, however, I can assure you that I am not selfish and as I can't wear a mask, have not gone near a shop or met up with a friend. I certainly have not harassed the doctor in any way whatsoever, but I do think, the secretary could have informed me within a six month period that the doctor was not happy to write this letter. They seem to be able to write me ridiculous text messages, as and when it suits!

Is there a medical reason why you can’t wear a mask? If not maybe that’s the reason your own GP won’t write you a letter! I don’t think you’ll get any better result from a private GP. I hope you get sorted though and manage to get away joy. x. Btw. Have you tried a cotton face mask? They are much easier to breath through than the medical ones.

anng18 profile image
anng18 in reply to Joy123

Hi Joy,Medical reason - Gold Band D - COPD - Emphysema.

I don't go to shops or go out with friends, to avoid compromising other people.

Have you tried a face mask with elastic that goes around your head,rather than masks with the ear loops? I thought I’d tried every kind of mask, and couldnt get on with any of them. Then I tried one with the elastic that goes around my head, and though it’s challenging, I can actually manage it for a while. I don’t know why it makes a difference but it does,for me anyway.

I'll keep looking HungryHuffle - no luck so far!

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