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Plans for GP's to see people with same condition in groups,

Plans for GP's to see people with same condition in groups,

Article in Telegraph today, by Laura Donnelly....interested to hear your reactions.

Sorry...can't work out how to upload whole article.

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Thanks for posting this. I see GPs are keen!!! I have attended groups, organised some and run some, of one sort or another. For information sharing for those who can easily follow, i.e. not deaf or have learning difficulties etc -fine. For personal 'sharing', can be good if people screened beforehand.For information and discussion-can be really supportive i.e. 'its not just me'.

The issue I have is that some people are far too anxious to attend a group, and if they did wouldn't dare say anything. They might feel they should attend the group and can't then ask GP individually.Telling a group of random people about confidentiality doesn't guarantee it will happen.

I know of two groups run for the same cohort of people, same diagnosis; women's group -26 attended Mens- 6. Asked OH about it. In his view-bonkers! He wont be going to a group. it's hard enough getting him to a GP.

Theoretically, all in all, it isn't a bad idea, providing those who don't like it can have 1:1.

On second thoughts it would be no good our GPs running a group unless they got someone in who knows something about RA!!

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Leaving RA aside where I can see group meeting may be of help, with maybe a well trained Rheumatology nurse...not just somebody with some sort of "clinical qualification". I recently attended Group meetings (not consultations) about skin cancers, & preventing falls for the elderly which were informative & interesting.

Maybe I got the wrong impression about what is being considered?

My first thought was that individual consultations on deeply personal conditions would be /could be shared with a group of strangers. ......which could lead to conditions like colon cancer (which a lot of people now don't consult their GP out of embarrassment) could progress beyond help.

I guess we will have to see where this goes. For now....I'm with your hubby & Dr Google (joke!)

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I think with some conditions it might work, but for personal conditions no

like I wouldn't mind if its for RA

my last hosptail app I must had seemed a bit of a werdo

as there was one woman before me and when she came out I noticed she had blood tests to be done, and then on my turn I had blood tests and I was looking for that woman to speak to her to see what drugs she was on for RA and how she fared on them and so on, she did look strange at me :O)

but it turned out she only just been dignosed and didn't know anymore than I did

she been given a low dose of methotrexate

I felt a bit like a werdo

but other than here I don't know anyone with RA and you feel so alone with it

please excuse spelling

my gran had it but she died 30years ago,I was in my teens and never thought ID have it

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Thanks for sending this, interesting. If I want the whole town to know about my issues I would walk round with one of those sandwich boards!I personally I would prefer the one to one with my GP, especially if I am having a bad day where sometimes you sit there and cry and don’t know why you are crying 😩. Has that ever happened to anyone? I feel a bit of a numpty after 😊. If they organised perhaps discussions groups that’s a different matter. For me I like to chat with my dr as sometimes it raises other issues I may be facing.

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I'm retired, but I'm sure there are a lot of working people who not only couldn't attend such a long meeting, but more importantly want to keep their condition confidential. Imagine too, turning up to find work colleagues there with something they don't want spread around the work place. Awful.

It's a can of worms.........that could go really pear shaped!

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Support groups sound like a good idea, group consultations are absolutely not. If you live in a small village or even in an area where you know lots of people, you might not want to be the talk of the town, especially if it is something personal. More and more people have co-morbid conditions and often need a doctor to help unpick the issue, what the cause is and what needs treating.

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Good point, Crashdoll, excellently and pithily put

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Can't think of anything worse. I live in a village. I'd rather boil my own head than share with locals!

I do think support groups are a good idea though.

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I agree with norisa.its abad idea.don.t they realise .how ill people are with RD when they decide to see a doctor.

If we have a problem we phone our Rhuemy nurse.

And our doctor only when we feel ill.so we need that private time.

Also they should see that this illness effects our mental help .which again we need time with our doctor .as we don.t talk about it easily.

Groups are good only as a back up.we talk on here but we say see your nurse or doctor. Just like we do to our family.so for me its a big NO NO .

HUGS TO YOU ALL .XX KATHY XX

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Sorry mental health not help. Sorry morning brain xxkathy xx

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Mrning foggy brain? try vit B12 xx

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Good morning lovely .

Thank you .i have started them.lets hope they make a difference.

Hugs kathy xx

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funnily enough my gp recommended then abt 2yrs ago when worried about dh memory probs' i took them to as '4 oldies' and got much sharper, he the same x

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Yes they reckon a lack of b12 makes you fuzzy brain.

All my blood count has bee low for about 6 months .white and red cells in fact most of them .

Doctor said i have pernicious aneamia .so have been started o n b12 injections.

I do feel a wee bit better .but its ongoing .with my blood count .sounds like its doing good for you .hugs kathy xx

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Goodness, there’s a turn up for the books! Groups might work for education and sharing information, but I don’t see how they replace a clinical consultation. As others have said, nobody’s going to be keen on sharing personal information in a public setting. I get that GPs are overworked, and there’s not enough of them - but I don’t see this as a solution.

Mind you, in Australia, I believe we have something like 20 qualified Rheumy nurses! If you’re between appts for the Rheumy (and there’s only about 350 of them in OZ), there’s zero people for me to ring, as none of those nurses appear to be in South Australia. This “abandoned” feeling, is one of the reasons I’m reluctant to take MTX. I live alone, and there’s zero help if I suffer from bad side effects.

Anyway, back on topic - wouldn’t training GP Practice nurses in the Rheumy area be a better support for GPs? But I’m guessing that, at the end of the day, it’s all about the money :)

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That's a good idea YB....it seems all our practice nurses are trained in looking after people with Diabetes, in fact practically every time I go in to the surgery they ask me if I'm diabetic...... but look at me dumbly if I ask anything about RA........as if to say ' you've got it you should know'.

Luckily I have a brilliant, recently trained rheumatology nurse who definitely understands reactions to drugs far better than the Rhumatologist.

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The NHS concentrate on a set number of issues. When I was a PM it was cataracts, falls prevention and colon cancer. Probably because the way it's funded, the dosh doesnt stretch far enough and probably never will. In a couple of years, something else will be the flavour of the month i suspect.

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I think we should stop being so PC about telling parents their children are fat!

Every where we see see & read signs saying obesity contributes to diabetes & cancer....but we still won't bite the bullet & start tackling problems from where it could all begin.

It's no good waiting until vanity clicks in .....in what used to be teenagers, but now ten year olds are very body conscious. Maybe it should be included in ante natal care......fat children can be unhealthy children?

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not sure re practice nurses, depends who you get .... i'll never forget the one who told me i have early onset RA .... i was nearly 73 !?! x

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A very intersting read. Thank you. 🙂

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I found the article in the Daily Mail.....I personally don't think it's a good idea.

dailymail.co.uk/health/arti...

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I agree.....talking about one's experiences with RA & how you deal with them could be of help in group meetings, the way this site is.

But I won't sit & discuss ANY health problems with my neighbours......In fact I'm sure we all have health issues it's difficult enough to discuss with nurse/doctor.....let alone with the local postman sitting listening.

Unless something like this is very sensitively managed it could be a disaster.

Although all the stressed GP's would get a rest.

I know the NHS is free to all at point of use- but please NOT ALTOGETHER!

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Think I understand a bit better - it's saying that many people with LTCs "book regular, individual appointments" so I suppose it's to replace those, rather than the ad hoc appointments for specific complaints related to your long term condition. In which case, I see why GPs would be keen.

Otherwise it would be a case of...

"I need to see a doctor, I'm having a flare up of gout"

"Well we've got a two-hour gout appointment Thursday week at 2.15"

... which obviously wouldn't work at all.

Now I need to go and have a shower after clicking on the Daily Mail...

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Lol, I feel the same about the daily mail..

Anyway, no GP has ever been able to either diagnose/refer or give me useful advice about anything RD related, why would pushing me into a group of others who don't know much help ?

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I do think that talking to others with an illness can help a lot i.e. tips on how to do things etc, but to discuss medical problems in front of others to me is a big no no. Whatever happened to patient confidentiality?

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This has probably been put out to gauge the public's reaction......if our little contribution is anything to go by .....it's not going to be happening any time soon.

I am right now suffering from "kick the cat" syndrome. I have "lost" my internet connection between my iPad & my TV.....I don't know which button I pressed that I shouldn't have....I am just so angry with myself!

Maybe there are group meetings for techie-idiots I could attend???

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Sympathies. The dog regularly pushes a button on the remote messing all the settings up. Well, that's my excuse

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No dog I'm afraid...just me being a Smart A,& thinking I know what I'm doing! Grrr!.

I've just ordered a DVD player from Amazon.....that has got to be simpler....hasn't it? Please say yes!

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Our's works beautifully, even for me x

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What a dreadful idea. As many have already said, I want my health conditions to be private & confidential between me & my doctor (haha & Health Unlocked!!) As it is, the 10 minute appointment is just never long enough & I only book an to see him for other reasons eg. urine infection. I much prefer a call to the Rheumatology Nurse but, of course, only in emergencies directly related to my RD & Fibro. I see a spinal consultant for my severely degenerative spine. I can’t see any benefit with a group consultation unless this is feeling the way for privatising (sidelining?) our disabilities. Perhaps they think that we’re wasting GP time! How can they treat a group with any satisfactory outcome? Perhaps we could sit in a big circle & have a ‘Pass the Parcel’. Every time the music stops you could unwrap a layer to reveal a medication? ‘Yippee, I’ve got some pain patches!’ or ‘Wow, I’ve got Methotrexate!’

Sorry, I know I’m a cynic but who on earth thought than one up doesn’t understand how multiple conditions affect people.

Hearing the news, it just said, ‘conditions like backache & arthritis’. That doesn’t bode well, does it? There is no understanding.

Nic xx

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Love the pass the parcel idea! Had a good laugh thinking of all the possible Yippees...

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If we don't mock we will cry.

Until some one's Death Certificate says Rheumatoid Arthritis....it will not be taken seriously.

I've had cancer & had "The Look", the sympathy, the roundabout way of enquiring "How long have you got"?

Now when I say I have RA....not a flicker......I got more interest when I broke my arm.

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Ahh bless you xxkathyxx

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In our paper it mentioned erectile dysfunction as a condition for which this group thing would be suitable. Really. Would any man want to go to such a group?

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More to the point would any woman?

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I can't imagine any woman, however loving and supportive of her partner, would be comfortable let alone the partners of gay men.

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Yes, I read that. I don’t think that session would have many takers. I wonder what the GP would do for up to 2 hours when nobody turned up? ☕️🍪☕️🍪 & more ☕️🍪 xx

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google.com/amp/s/www.telegr...

Hope this is it AC x

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Thanks for the link.

It stays that the facilitator would be a clerk, receptionist or healthcare assistant who had had a days training, who then can point them to advice on their health conditions......well....lots of GP's don't understand RA, it's such a complex illness, so what info an unqualified person gets from one days training?

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Well I have had 70+ years to know my body, 20 of them with RA, so I certainly don't need some adenoidal teenager whether they be clerk, receptionist, or healthcare assistant advising me where to go to look after myself.

A couple of weeks ago an HCA tried to do an ECG on me .....until I pointed out the machine was not switched on .

I give up.

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That made me laugh. 😂😂

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Hollow laughter. I could weep

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Ha ha love it xx🤣🤣🤣🤣

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Absolutely agree, don’t want to be seen by not v qualified thanks x

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Oh yes! What a good idea. The reception rottweiler would be great at that. Then you wonder how long people would be waiting on the phone to book appointments. Although I suppose it would be more financially beneficial to take on another receptionist.

I still can’t believe this.

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Thanks. I started reading all the replies. (not done yet) One person cites Cardiac Rehab as a similar example. That is entirely different to the groups proposed, as I understand it. Cardiac Rehab is run by a specialist team of Nurses, Physics, Dietician, OT, Counsellor etc. So yes, that works as it is the best mix of patients and experts. If there was a course run like this for RA....and other chronic health conditions that would be more like it, but far too expensive.

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I have visions of sitting there with a Hattie Jaques type nurse having us tell all about our ailments.......... from Haemorrhoids to Bunions, then giving us all a Paracetamol & saying "Same time next moth folks".

Sorry but they can't be serious!

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I remember a TV prog where the facilitator of the group kept saying, 'is it a sexuallll problem'. Can't think of the prog name. Imagine....

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The more I read how we sane, sensible, somewhat sick folk are replying.......I think it might be a good opportunity to have a good laugh.......

Because It certainly doesn't sound as if we will all be baring our personal health conditions in the local GP surgery anytime soon.

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My daughter was wanting an appointment for her 3year old with an ongoing temp and was told that a nurse would see him when my daughter said she wanted to see a doctor she was told this nurse was a doctor without the qualifications.she did see her .she said it was just a virus .but my grandson.ended up in hospital with sepsus.never again.xx

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Yep! Wonder which genius is gonna get a bonus for thinking it up? If it takes off..........even a Knighthood maybe?

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I haven't had a chance to have a proper read, but my first though was are they serious? Consultations are supposed to be private. Confidentiality? In this village?!!!? They can't spell it let alone practice it.

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Second thought was if they are releasing details of this harebrained scheme, what are they covering up? Some slightly less deranged idea to be issued so we can be grateful? Paranoid and neurotic? Me?

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No....we've just been there before " Oh that's not too bad then" fools a lot of the people most of the time!

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I think it would be good for educational purposes, but I’d be reluctant to discuss my issues in a group.

I recently had a Rheumy appointment with an advanced practitioner nurse - it was the best appointment I’ve had yet. She spent more than five minutes with me and helped me to understand everything so much better eg what is RA pain, OA pain, fibro pain; best time for injections / blood tests etc.

I left with an action plan for treatment with a view to drug reduction in the longer term and a much greater understanding.

In my opinion we could do with more APNs.

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Absolutely! 1:1 kindly, attentive, informative encounter.

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If they were as good as yours' in explaining the nitty gritty of treating/managing RD I'm all for it. The experts can be wonderful but maybe they are so used to the complexities they forget to tell us, the untrained patients, about the basics

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I went to a small group session to learn how to use metoject. The nurse could not give the information due to one woman constantly interrupting with mainly irrelevant anecdotes and her life/RD history. We all then were seen individually to inject ourselves and had the opportunity to ask questions in private. He took Mrs chatterbox first whilst we all waited outside for our turn, she took for ever and a day. Not a good experience, it took ages, was terribly frustrating and the nurse was not skilled in managing a group. I could imagine similar happening with the above proposal.

If I visit my GP I have a problem that needs attention, privately.

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Oh dear, sounds like last support/info one run by my hospital: totally commandeered by one woman and her history/problems, haven’t been to any more x

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Can’t imagine the Rt Hon MH or TM going along to a group session for their erectile dysfunction or backache. ‘Oh, it’s OK we won’t mention it to anyone’!!

It looks to me as though it’s going to be a them & us situation. It’s bound to be privatised and you’ll be sanctioned if you don’t attend. Of course, the sanction would mean your prescriptions being withheld! 🤬 Nic xx

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Fine...I'll,go along.....complain loud & long about how my knee hurts, listen to others do the same & Voila a few more thousand.£££'s wasted by the NHS.

Somebody needs to get real.

Support groups with consenting adults ...fine.

But personal delicate consultations ? No.....

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My h & I have already discussed this as it was in our paper & we both said no way, my h giving an example of his last visit to our GP. He wouldn't have discussed a particular problem had this been in place & considered many other men wouldn't either, their need to see the GP would suddenly be a cough or some other less personal complaint.

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Exactly NMH! When I heard this first thing this morning, I didn’t believe my ears. I really can’t believe this can be anything good. My husband said, ‘here we go again, the same as the Pain Clinic’!

When we moved here 4 years ago, I went to see my new GP. I also had a query about my medication. She told me, in no uncertain terms, that I had to go to the Pain Clinic as it was not her job to prescribe painkillers. Me? - Gobsmacked! Nic xx

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Just throwing this in ......if anyone can access TVChannel 4 catch up to see their 6:30 PM news tonight-very interesting interview with senior ex civil servant who is suffering from Parkinson's and terminal prostate cancer who has been refused benefits. He was remarking how inadequate the assessor was ...wrote down completely the wrong information on application form, and said his research shows 71% of first-time PIP applications refused benefits have been reversed in 2018.

So for those in this position worth keeping an eye on Ch4 news,

I only saw half the interview so didn't catch ,location,names etc.

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Just attempted to look for it on ALL 4. I didn't realise as I've not tried before but it seems the news isn't available on catch up I'm afraid, even if it's same day.

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Thanks nmh, I thought it was me being inept....at l least I can cross that off the list.

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Not at all. I think it should, guess there's a reason why not though.

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I meant my lack of technical know-how to use the Ch4 back up.......not the subject matter!!!

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Oh, hahah! Sleepyhead Sunday!

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Try going to the Channel 4 News website channel4.com/news/ - can’t seem to copy/paste direct link to the article, but scroll down to 6 Oct articles and look for ‘Living with disability and denied benefits, a former civil servant speaks out’.

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Thanks ...will do!

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I just watched it...yes that was the item I meant. His name is Andrew McDonald...I thought it said he was Chair of Scope ( Equality for Disabled People) but there is no mention of his name in their website.

But his description of his treatment was an awful & compelling indictment of the way All Benefits/Allowance applications are undertaken.

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another thought looking at it another way, 4 years ago we were all in the area having the fronts of our houses done

a silly builder left something on our entrance and I fall,smashed onto concrete losing my 4 front teeth

it was bad enough what happened but it ment everyone where I lived knew I lost my teeth

and everyone was starring at me for days afterwards

it really effected me

I wouldn't want the same reaction on any illness I had

it makes you feel like a freak

you tell doctors things because its confidential, you might not if it wasn't

so I am now into two minds giving it more thought

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From NHS Alliance. I can absolutely see why they want and probably need to do this. It's to ease the burden and cost of repeating themselves 10 times in one day. If someone is starting methotrexate, it makes sense to tell a group of people about it in 20 minutes rqthwr than 4 x 20 minutes repeating the same info.

Here's the link from NHS Alliance

nhsalliance.org/making-time...

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Thank you...will read it later..in a rush right now.

Your explanation would make sense...if that is all it is.But as I haven't seen my GP since January, I don't think I will worry....I don't think they will be advertising for people to join in!

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Interesting article Cwendyn. It sounds like my worst nightmare ! 2 hrs with a chunk of the time being with non clinicians - the NHS is full of them - and then listening to the woes of others ...Not interested.

I can see the waiting list of even getting onto a group being very prohibitive..I waited 7 weeks during which time I was ill to get onto a group to learn how to inject MTX. What a farce.

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I agree it's not ideal, but the NHS has to do something to free up clinicians time, otherwise I think a health insurance will be brought in.

To be honest, perhaps I'm an anomaly, but I don't care who knows I have RA. In fact, I tell people including all my staff. Thats so they tell me if they have a cold etc...and i stay away. Think they were hopingit would be the other way around, haha

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Cwendyn something needs to be done to save the NHS. Restructuring and more cash through income tax for a start, and reconsideration of many non clinical roles would be my preference.

Most folks know I have RD , but that is quite different from discussing my health issues with a bunch of strangers who most likely will know nothing about RD.

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I just wrote a considered reply which disappeared so a précis of the reply

NHS needs more cash

We have been spoilt not paying enough for years

The present funding system does not work no matter which political party is in power

Unless we pay more it is inevitable private enterprise will take over.

We don't want that so we must lobby our MP's to listen to people who run big businesses & make a profit .

It won't be easy but unless somebody applies some sort of effort .....

.???

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Yes yes yes .....we pay little for health care, per capita in comparison to many, if not all other European countries.

You only get what you pay for. ( I've also got a thing about training and non clinical staff , but I'll leave that for now !)

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As an ex nurse I've got a big thing about non clinical managers thinking they know more about patients /training/ facilities/I could go on...........than senior clinicians & staff who are at the coalface.

For Europe the figures only show what people pay in taxes, there are all sorts of different choices for the essential top-up insurance! So the UK shortfall is worse than it looks.

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I'm an ex nurse , medical family of all sorts from Drs to health care assistants and more recently a practice manager ( my aunt who I have a good relationship with). I'm saddened by the comments she makes,Ill informed generalisations, about complex health issues of which she has no knowledge. All focussed on running an efficient service. But little insight into efficiency starts with providing a service that meets needs, not one that saves money. Her salary is almost twice that of a staff nurse, the irony is lost on her.

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My rheumatology nurse ,highly qualified ex Snr Sister ......takes her career seriously & does a great job - earns less than I did when I retired in 1997...not as a nurse I hasten to add but to be honest although I had a lot of responsibility - my job was really doing nobody any good except big business.(& me of course)

We have recently had a new Practice Manager....words fail me so I won't say anything....except receptionists now have a little patter when they answer & tell me their name......I'm so touched.

But how we are going to prevent the NHS falling off the cliff I just don't know. From what I hear & read a change of Government now will only re-arrange the deckchairs on the Titanic.

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Your last sentence says it all.

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Have they forgotten .that we all suffer from the same nasty thing .but we are all different. And as it has been shown many times on here .

suffer differently.

A GP. Gets paid for every patient. So if they get paid for the time they spend with us .

why try to put us on a production line.in order to make it easier on them .

because its certainly not for our benefit. We need that private time to tell them how we hurt mentally and physically.

Without being worried that our confidentuality will be compremised.

People won.t go and suffer in silence or sit there and clam up.its a no brainer.

Kathy xx

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It's true the GP practice gets paid per patient, but not per appointment. It's an annual global sum (unless it's changed recently which might be the case).

As we see Rheumy for most appointments, im unsure how this works with GP appointments. I rarely go to the GP-twice in 3 years i think.

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I can see this coming- to see the GP one to one your have to pay for private appointment

if it goes that way lets hope there be more GP,S with more morals

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There was a report in our local newspaper recently saying that local GP surgeries were going to band together and the GPs would take turns in manning 'shifts' for want of a better word, at named surgeries, both in the evenings & at weekends. It said we would no longer have named GPs, we would just see whoever was available.

Not much change really as you can never see the person named on the hospital form as "your GP". I don't think the man would recognise me as I have never seen him as a patient.

Patients have not been informed of this. When asked what was actually happening, the Practice Manager apparently had no answer.

As I see a GP about once a year I have not bothered to enquire.

Very unsatisfactory though.

If I pay to see a doctor it will be a Consultant in the specialty I need....not my GP, although under the present rules NHS GP's cannot treat one of their NHS. patients privately....unless that has changed too!

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Nope I hope they never get on to this in Australia. I would refuse. How invasive and what about your privacy. WtH?????

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All taken care of by getting people to sign a privacy clause 😉

(Hehehe)

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No way! How many times has someone said to you " I shouldn't tell you this but.......?"

Also.....do you honestly think if some details of your personal health condition became public knowledge you would feel better if some was sued, and who would pay for the legal costs if that?

Sorry Mmrr, I don't think anyone would be reassured by a privacy clause.

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AgedCrone - It was a joke.

How many busybodies would stop giving away your personal details because they had signed a clause !!!!!

Sounds like getting front row for public hangings to me. 21c entertainment.

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Woops!I didn't see the HeHeHe.......I thought it didn't sound like you!

I've got a better idea, we'd wear blindfolds...so no one would know who has what dastardly disease!

Problem solved!

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Nope I would never agree to that. It is an in vasion of my privacy and I would be going elsewhere to see a GP. Never going to be OK for me.

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How about video recording the group sessions and playing them in the GP waiting room (It would make a change from daytime TV). They would reach an even wider audience, and eventually do away with the need for the group sessions.

Everyone attending the GP surgery would sign a confidentially clause in the car park before entering the building.

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What a wonderful idea......& if we all wore blindfolds in the video- no one would know so us....so that would be OK wouldn't it?

You are being naughy now Mmrr!!

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Ha ha xx

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🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

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Absolutely ridiculous. We are individuals with individual p r ob lems. Fine for physio or weight loss but not GP....

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This looks like the same thing from the BBC News website:

Shared GP appointments trialled - and patients 'like' them bbc.co.uk/news/uk-45770998

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The patients who agreed to go to them might have liked them. How many refused to go I wonder......

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I do wish there was a facility on this site to click to put everything into chronological order.

I'm getting replies to posts that are not mine, answers to questions I haven't asked, in fact I think I've had enough on "Group" everything for now!

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Maybe they should show the doctors our reply. A big NO NO XX

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We could print them off as we are all anonymous ,but as some are a bit scathing about GP's who tend to be a bit touchy about their lack of knowledge of RA ...might not be a good idea!

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My reply was to sore knees, but I agree the discussion gets a bit confusing.

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I wasn't actually replying/complaining to you Norisa..I clicked on Comment!

I have just seen yet another article on "Arthritis" in the Sunday Mail ...three pages on "How to eat to beat arthritis!"

You've guessed it.....Osteoarthritis.

I'm trying to send an email to Rachel Reilly... ..the author of this 'Special Report" ..... asking if she could possibly differentiate between OA & RA.

After all, if she is willing to put her name on the report she should at least entitle it. "How to eat to beat OSTEO arthritis! " It's like writing 'How to beat measles", then writing about mumps!

But it is so irritating.

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I can see the benefit of having groups for support (just like Weight Watchers!) or educational purposes, eg when I was first diagnosed with diabetes, I had to attend an education session and found it very useful. But for any sort of clinical purpose - absolutely not.

Apart from anything else, as others have mentioned, there always seems to be at least one motormouth in any group who dominates things, as well as others who witter on about irrelevancies or go right off topic, and both of those scenarios are unfair to others who can’t get a word in, or miss out on opportunities to hear info that would actually be helpful. So you could end up sitting with a bunch of gossipy strangers for two hours and get no benefit from it whatsoever, not to mention travel time and cost.

And as for confidentiality - I don’t believe for one minute that would be observed!

I can also imagine some people picking up some piece of info in a group and then going to see their GP or other clinician to investigate it further, thus defeating the aim of relieving the pressure on the GP.

Somebody somewhere is probably getting paid big bucks to come up with this nonsense!

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Think we all agree SK.

Even when only two people with RA have a discussion they are poles apart.

I discuss my condition/meds with a friend who also has RA with similar symptoms....we know each other well...but we continually come at similar problems from a different angle......but as we know each other, we remain friends.....but imagine that in a group! No thank you.

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I can understand group sessions for psychological support, but not for anything else. Maybe they think it will weed out the "worried well".

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Attract the worried well, more like!

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Any GP worth his salt will weed out the worried well,dredge up his/her psychiatric training & deal with it....doesn't need need to form "group"!

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I think it is a dumb idea. So how does the doctor prescribe to each patient?

Or are these sessions extra to co nsultation time? Also in a group session the gobby ones will rattle on leaving the timid ones speechless.

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I don't mind discussing my gene related illness, as it is rare, but there are certain aspects and pharmacuetical side effects of it that I will not discuss in public. I am not impressed with this idea which has probably only been piloted with poeple that have a runny nose and say it works for everything else as well. The bureaucrats do like distorting results to suit their aims and careers.

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I just wrote a reply & it disappeared....Grrr!

Briefly .....try to read the actual report. The press article had a slant that missed out a lot. The link is in the original post.

The scheme might have some merit....I don't have the patience to write my reply again...... but apparently some people with long term conditions visit their GP almost weekly ..,they don't need treatment.....just reassurance ...this does waste a huge amount of a doctor 's time....which a group led by a specialist nurse could solve.

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Im registered with a small GP practice which does not have the room for group meetings. Plus they do not know much about RA either.

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If you read the whole report Matilda that is the sort of practice it will help.

The group meeting could be held somewhere like a community centre & the person running the group would have knowledge of whatever condition the patients had,

If ten people with RA go to their doctor every week just to ask a question & that a Rheumy nurse could answer...& quite a few do.......that would leave 10 appointment slots free for somebody who had a new condition & needed diagnosing by a doctor

At these meetings if the Rheumy nurse thought you needed to see say a physio, she could organise that.

The way the press printed the story really didn't present it very well....I was immediately against it...but on reading the report there is some sense in it.

On the other hand,,.....where the people with the right qualifications to hold these meetings are coming from, I don't know! But I think we are going to have to accept we are not training enough doctors, so eventually if we need medical help we are going to have to accept seeing Nurse Practitioners, who are often more suitable & knowledgeable than a new young GP.

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