We all know the saying 'God helps those that help themselves' well its so true cos the NHS don't!!!

I'm a very angry frustrated injured runner today. I've been suffering from Plantar Fasciitis for months now and have paid over £400 on private treatment which admittedly the Acupuncture helped ease the pain but has not cured it. My doc referred me for more NHS Physiotherapy treatment which I had to complete a 'Self Referral Form' for and send it away.

This was done with speed as I obviously wasn't going to waste any more time. A letter arrived today stating my form had been received. The waiting time for an appointment is approximately 14 weeks!!!!!!!!!

14 weeks what the devil does a person do who can't walk more than a few hundred yards without feeling pain, when I try to walk through it all I end up doing is putting undue pressure on my right hip which is the hip I have had severe sciatica in previously. I'm getting on in years and the NHS is encouraging us to keep healthy by staying fit!!!! Well my response to the NHS is get your act together because the longer a person stays incapacitated the less likely they are to remain fit and then their health will suffer. :(

Sorry for the rant folks but I needed to get this off my chest and just say for goodness sake don't ignore any injuries, because you'll be left high and dry or with huge expensive bills.

Happy running and cycling and swimming and whatever else you have added to your exercise regime since you joined not just C25K but the whole fitness club :)

You may notice this post has only two tags, that's because I've removed all the others (12) and left what I consider the only two relevant ones.

20 Replies

  • Oh dear, I feel your frustration with the wait, luckily mine was only 6 weeks on the NHS for my neck problem and even that seemed like too long to wait when you are in agony everyday, I paid for private too but with no progress after my 10 session limit on my works health insurance (£100 excess) I ended up back with the NHS and another wait :( I also think they discharge you too early too, I was 80% better when the physio announced I was to go 'self manage' that was in January and I still suffer depending on what I do now. When you do get to see them don't say you're feeling better until you're 100% sure you are! Take care x

  • Thanks for the tip Lovefood. I'm surprised you had to wait so long for a neck problem that's much more serious than feet!! But I will remember what you have said when I eventually get an appointment.

  • It was exercise related that did mine too, I've damaged one of my scalenes that run from your neck to the top of your rib cage, least I'm not in pain all day everyday now but I do struggle with repetitive tasks (sitting on the couch too long being one of them!) also stuff I do at work sets it off and I feel like I'm in catch 22, need to do my job but can't cope sometimes :( anyway enough moaning by me, just don't want you feeling like you didn't get enough NHS treatment before you are back out their revolving door :)

  • This is a familiar story I'm afraid. I feel you are justified in feeling angry and frustrated. I got a choose and book letter last week. I'm in the same position as you - on strong painkillers and seizing up because I can no longer even walk the way I was. I questioned having to wait until 2 September for an appointment - only to be told it could have been up to 18 weeks i.e. I should be grateful it wasn't longer.

    I am with you all the way in this. We are doing the very best we can and feel we are having to fight the system.

    I hope you manage to get some kind of relief very soon. Pain is so debilitating.

    Thinking about you - big hug :)

  • Thanks Beek, you and me have both had nothing but pain these past few months. I wonder sometimes having worked and paid my NI for 40 years (only had a few years off with the boys) what the devil did I pay all that money for, its not doing me any good when I need it most. Its a good job I can keep motivated with other exercise although some days its hard when my foot is throbbing like mad :(

    Hubby's buying a Chinese Takeaway tonight to try and cheer me up, suspect it will take a lot more than that :)

  • Yes, We all fell for that dream didn't we? Pay N.I. all your life - then no worries from cradle to grave. The annoying part is that we are actively trying to get a grip of our health, we are not taking everything for granted. I now feel like a pariah when there is so much in the news about diabetes using 10% of NHS funds.

    Try to shut it out, as best you can, keep up with as much activity as you are able to do without crocking yourself even more.

    I hope you soon get some help.

    I'll get Dan to send you some of his POSITIVE HEALING VIBES! :) :) :)

    And enjoy the take away!

  • Sorry to hear this OldGIrl. 14 weeks waiting time is ridiculous and I can understand your annoyance. I'm convinced the government are trying to drive us all mad with these sorts of frustrations so that they can bring in an alternative - a situation where you pay for care. Like we haven't all paid enough NI contributions already!

    So what are your plans? Tough it out or see a physio privately?

    Feel for you. I really do.

  • Got strong anti-inflammatory tablets off the doctor and his parting shot was you may need more as you might have to wait 6 weeks!!! Huh even they don't have a clue on waiting times. I've already spent £400 on private and as a pensioner I'm reluctant to go back private as this could take months to sort, that's a scary bill on a pension!!!! I'm going to phone them on Monday and ask if they have a cancelation list, I would be happy to go within 1/2 hour notice. But suspect any cancelations would be viewed as a bonus coffee break spell to them!!!! They're not hard worked with hours 8:30-4:30 M>Th & 8:30-4:00 Fridays. I would have loved those working hours.

  • Sorry to hear this and I can understand your frustration and anger. Unfortunately I think there are many reasons for such delays not least funding cuts but I won't go there ;)

    Good luck and hope you get sorted once and for all.

  • Aww Oldgirl, that's appalling! When I had hip pain I was lucky enough to get a referral in about 3 weeks, so it does depend where you are.

    I had a consultation, was set a series of exercises and after a follow up in a month was put into a lower limb gym class for 6 weeks where we all had hip or leg problems and would go and do supervised individual exercises using some gym equipment.

    I was actually quite impressed by the service but guess I was just lucky.

    Hope you get yours resolved soon.

    A couple of years ago I had Tendonitis in my foot and found Boots foam insoles really helped - might be worth a try?

  • Thanks Ullyrunner, have already got Boots Gel insoles, bought two pairs and use them all the time. I'm going to phone them on Monday and see if they have a cancelation list and beg to be put on it, I'm not apposed to begging if it will get me seen sooner ;) I'm only a 5 minute drive from the hospital too so could be there in no time at all.

  • If you lived by me I'd send you to my physio. I'm so sorry to hear your in pain and that your not getting the help you need.

    S X

  • Wow that is a long time I've always had quick access to NHS physio yes I've had to wait maybe upto a month but never longer, I have to say though I've had mixed results from great (but I was too young to really listen) to rubbish (they handed me a sheet with exercises on and never even checked I was doing them properly) to absolutely fab complete with acupuncture and lovely ultrasound therapy (which I've had loads of times before and I love it)

  • Try seing if you can actually get through to the physio dept themselves when you phone and not some regional place, they may be more receptive to phoning for any last minute cancellations if you can speak to the physio ?! Good luck it sounds awful x

  • That's awful, I feel for you. There is nothing worse. I agree with trying to ring for a cancellation. Do a dummy run to the place and tell them from a phone call you can be in there in ...... Many minutes. Tell them your desperate. Sometimes if you pop In And talk to the receptionist they are more sympathetic if they have seen your face. Otherwise ask your doc what the other waiting times are in other towns and see if any of them are less. I believe you can go out of your area if the times are better. Good luck and I hope you get a speedy solution.

  • Thanks RFC other towns isn't an option up here in NE Scotland your postal address decrees where you go unless they the NHS suggest an alternative. But the clinic is only 10 minutes max from my home even in busy traffic, I could walk it in 15 minutes if I could walk but even that is a slow hobble these days!!! There's one thing for sure I will not accept this time scale without a fight but will go in with the gently, gently approach first, if that doesn't work the boxing gloves will go on ;)

  • This post is so sad. The NHS is a truly remarkable organisation that has been chronically underfunded for years and particularly so in the last 5years. I'm fed up of hearing politicians claiming the NHS is unsustainable and can't cope with the pressures of an ageing population. It's all about choices. If we choose to fund it properly through our taxes then we can have a first class service. However labour introduced PPI financing of hospitals, which is costing the NHS fortune and the Conservative/LibDems have massively starved it of money, whilst selling off great chunks to their rich friends and backers in Serco, Virgin and many others, whilst telling us all that there are no alternatives. Rubbish!! We could have a wonderful service IF we chose to. Don't blame the NHS, blame the politicians and hold them to account! Grrrrr

    Sorry political rant over, I will delete this post if you ask me to Oldgirl. I'm so sorry that you're having to wait such a long time for the treatment you need. It's not fair and it's not right and something should be done to improve things. Take care of yourself, m'dear x

  • I do feel your pain old girl, 14 weeks is a horrendously long time to wait. You have done everything you can in seeking alternative private medical treatment within your budget. Keep up any exercises that have been recommended and find some useful sites on the interweb that suggest ways to ease the condition. In defence of the NHS it is a local issue as the self referral for physiotherapy that i have made i have always been seen within 2 to 3 weeks and the treatment has been far superior to the private treatment that i have sought.

  • Oh, I am sorry that the waiting time is so long for you :( I agree about seeing if there's a cancellation list you can get on - I do hope so. Best wishes for getting it resolved quickly and I hope that the pain is manageable meanwhile.

  • Phoned them yesterday morning,

    No cancelation list. I'm on the vetting list, what's that I asked. The Physio go through all their new cases and prioritorise I wouldn't want it any other way, someone with a neck or back problem is more in need of quick help than me with PF. Was then told that after they reach my case I will then be offered an appointment which should be within a 6 week time frame. Crikey I could be looking at 20 weeks if this goes to maximum time. Might need to go on bread and jam diet and go private again. Got the doc again this afternoon will see what he says.

    Back to rowing to get rid of my frustration.

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