Desparately worried: My GP surgery has just sent... - Thyroid UK

Thyroid UK

115,703 members134,186 posts

Desparately worried

fiftyone
fiftyone

My GP surgery has just sent me a letter deregistering me, within seven days, from the surgery I have attended for a number of years. I have received good healthcare from my doctor and I am now very worried about moving somewhere else, because of my thyroxine dose. It is high and shows I am 'hyperthyroid' but this is not the case. It is just the numbers on the screen. I am extremely worried that a new doctor w ho does not know me will immediately cut my dose and make me ill. So many doctors just go by numbers on a screen. Really upset and don't know how to secure my current levo dose.

48 Replies

Why are you being deregistered? They can just deregister you?!

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Alanna012

Over the r past few months they have blamed me for staff problems. Firstly, staff were ignoring messages I left when ordering new supplies of medication; secondly, I have problems with strong accents over the phone. When I mentioned this in connection with a pending phone call, they accused me of discrimination, unreasonable behavour and being inconsiderate and put on my records the most upsetting letter. Then recently, I went to have blood tests and a day later, they surgery accused me of upsetting the nurse who, it seems burst into tears and needed three days off. When I wrote to the manager explaining how upsetting this all was for me because I have done nothing wrong, I received a letter deregistering me for 'lacking empathy' and 'losing trust in their service.' I am at my wit's end.

Alanna012
Alanna012 in reply to fiftyone

So sorry, it really awful especially at this time.

And I get where you're coming from with the strong accents. It's happened a couple of times in hospital settings. Once when my son went for a neurology appointment the consultant had quite a strong accent. I am born and bred in London so used to a wide array of accents but hers was so strong I really found it hard and my son just looked at me for help answering her questions. I had to disguise my difficulty by saying I wasn't very well and would be a bit slow.

I don't think there is an acceptable way to even ask to speak to someone else in that scenario as it will always be taken the wrong way.

You've been given great advice though and I hope it gets resolved.

xx

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Alanna012

thanks. In fact, I didn't refuse to speak to the doctor in question. I just told my difficulty and asked the NHS to ensure that whoever phoned me spoke with a native English accent. I never refused to speak to any particular individual. Difficult to know how else I could convey my problem. At least you know what it's like!

Alanna012
Alanna012 in reply to fiftyone

Sorry I didn't mean to imply you refused, I was thinking about myself.

But there isn't an acceptable way of putting it at all is there? You dealt with it directly and it still backfired. In my case I just left the appointment semi-clueless!

😀

helvella
helvellaAdministrator

Is it just you? Or are they closing down? Or losing a doctor and having to reduce their lists?

Is there another surgery? I appreciate your concerns but seems you simply have to get re-registered somewhere as soon as possible.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to helvella

it is just me. I am trying to get reregistered but they have only given me this week to do so and with covid pressures I'm not sure h ow soon this can happen.

helvella
helvellaAdministrator in reply to fiftyone

That is awful.

Depending on where you live, it might be worth going up the chain to the next level.

The guidance on deregistering makes it look like a last resort:

bma.org.uk/advice-and-suppo...

themdu.com/guidance-and-adv...

Your area might have some guidance (albeit what I have found is mostly from the GOP point of view). For example, in Kent LMC:

kentlmc.org/dealingwithdiff...

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to helvella

the manager who wrote the letter said I could appeal to the head of the partnership which I am doing. I am very worried cos they put this untrue letter on my files. I have been in touch with the Health Ombudsman but they can't consider the case for 25 weeks! and I'm not sure whether they still will if I'm deregistered. I've been with the practice for years and am quite happy with my doctor, so I am dreadfully upset, as there is no basis for this action at all.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

If you’re deregistered from a practice, it’s usually difficult to get re-registered elsewhere. However, because you have a right and a need to be registered with a GP, the NHS usually allocate another GP practice. Contact them immediately.

Would it be possible for you to arrange a meeting with the Practice Manager and try to resolve this? I’m not saying that you should apologise if you feel you’ve done nothing wrong. You could just say that you wanted to have a chat about how things had come to this so that you could draw a line under it.

I’m sure that you meant nothing by saying it, but, to be blunt, speaking about ‘strong accents’ could sound racist - even though I’m sure you didn’t mean it that way.

If I were you, I’d try to put this matter right even if it means swallowing a bit of pride 😊

Good luck with everything.

Stay safe

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Hidden

Thank you. You see this is just it. If I have a problem with accents, it is a problem, not a state of mind and people jump to conclusions. I had a terrible conversation the other day with a young lady with a broad Liverpudlian accent. It's not racist to have a problem and people in the surgery have not listened to what I have to say but just jumped to conclusions. It's especially relevant now that so many places are using telephone rather than face to face.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

You don’t have to persuade me 😊. The problem is that if the Practice has a grouse with you it’s the one thing that will stick.

Please try again to talk to the Practice Manager. You might have to grovel a bit but tell her that the last thing you wanted was to cause any upset and can you have a brief meeting with her. Don’t engage in a telephone discussion. They’re not good. There’s no body language or eye-to-eye contact. Emails and telephone calls are the blight of successful conflict resolution 🙄

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Hidden

I so agree, I have written an urgent letter to the Head of Practice to request a 'face to face' meeting. I am just devastated. I have truly done nothing wrong and it makes me feel fearful of voicing any problems ever again.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

I understand completely. These things happen. You’re under pressure. They’re under pressure. In my former job, I found it was always helpful to get things like this resolved at an informal level. Once things get formal, they escalate.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Hidden

That is so true. Unfortunately, the manager who put the discrimination letter on my file did so without any prior discussion. It was a fait accomplis before I knew what was going on.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

Even more reason to get it sorted. You’re still registered there for one week. Please make contact today. Keep calm.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Hidden

thanks for your suppport.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

Believe me, they’ll be wanting it sorted as much as you. They don’t know where you’ll be taking this to. Go on fiftyone. Be brave 😊

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

Follow the link below. Lots of information on this subject. Did you get a warning first? That’s obligatory.

bma.org.uk/advice-and-suppo...

fiftyone

You need to explain why you struggle with accents. I struggle a lot to hear on the phone due to combination of background noise and speaking fast - all too common in GP surgeries. Accents add to the mix too.

If you have a hearing disability you can make them aware.

Also making them aware you will take complaint further may make them back down. Ultimately practice managers are idiots and egotistical but have no power or decision making authority. The GP partner(s) will be making the decision as to whether you’re kept on or not.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Dk123

I am not sure if official bodies will still take up my complaint if I am no longer with the surgery?

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

You are with the surgery for another week.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to Dk123

I don’t think all Practice Managers are idiots 🥴. Probably about the same proportion as the rest of the population.

In my experience of these things, seeking confrontation achieves nothing. The soft answer turneth away wrath - and if it doesn’t then get confrontational.

So did you get a warning and was the letter from your CCG? If none of those things happened then I don’t think that proper procedure has been applied.

I know that some will jump on the racist bandwagon about ‘accents’ but that’s unfair.

I too cannot always understand accents, esp over the phone, I think that is totally unfair to beat you with that stick!

I would stick to my guns if I were you, politely but adamantly let this practise manager know that you have done nothing wrong and that you will be seeking advice from other agency’s. They have over played their hand!

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to NWA6

The letter was from the surgery manager. Should it have come from the CCG?

NWA6
NWA6 in reply to fiftyone

Yeah I thought so? We’re you given a warning? Was there a discussion(s) at all prior to this so that the practise manager could make all reasonable requests to resolve any issues prior to de- registering you? We’re you given an opportunity to tell your side of the situation?

If you can, always make contact written ie email, this is your evidence that you did everything you reasonable could to understand and sort the situation out. If your practise manager has no evidence of any warnings or information prior to de-registering ie email or letter then how can they evidence that they too did all they could to rectify the relationship?

When you verbally enter into conversations like these that have potentially serious consequences, by phone or face to face then there’s no evidence of what was said.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to NWA6

AFter they posted the 'bogus' discrimination letter on my file they warned me about any future 'bad behaviour. The woman who made this accusation and put this letter on my file invited me to a personal discussion before doing so. I had no idea what she was planning. However, even with this warning I have done nothing wrong. The manager is deregistering me, according to his letter because he says I am not 'and have lost trust in the surgery management'!!

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to fiftyone

sorry, DID NOT INVITE ME FOR A PERSONAL DISCUSSION

Hidden
Hidden in reply to fiftyone

That should have happened. Please try to make contact to have an informal discussion and get this matter resolved. Seeking confrontation is not the answer at this point.

Please read the link.

So sorry to hear this fifty one. A similar thing happened to me in November with my practice but they sent a letter to my home from the practice manager without even telephoning me first to try and discuss the issue. The problem I have is that I also have a back issue and also suffer frequent infections that can make me feel very unwell and usually feel desperate when I phone the GP to try and describe what is going on health-wise and I haven't had a definite diagnosis for years. Then I had confusion about a medication when talking to staff at surgery where I said I couldn't take a hydrocortisone cream and then attended pharmacy to collect a new cream and they reissued the same one. I'm borderline hypothyroid and believe I have some immune issues. Because I telephoned to say that the wrong cream had been sent to the pharmacy they sent me a letter stating I'd upset the staff and was being evasive which really upset me and that if it continues I would have to leave the surgery. Several times the GPs have told me I'm complex medically so this was just not right. I now try and avoid speaking to the surgery reception staff and just ask for a direct GP telephone appointment. It's a sad state of affairs when patients who are unwek and need appropriate understanding are treated this way and I hope that somehow this situation for you can be resolved.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to SamanneJ

so sorry to hear that you, too, have been treated abusively by a GP surgery. I have mainly found the GPs to be fine but it seems to be the admin staff who cause the problems. They don't use their brains!!

SamanneJ
SamanneJ in reply to fiftyone

It's just so difficult when you feel you desperately need some treatment or help with your medical issues and you receive letters like this. I sometimes need antibiotics as an emergency as it can also affect my glands and my thyroid. Was starting to feel more positive as I was issued a new cream and it was helping a skin condition when I came home and found this letter, such a shock. They stated they understood the difficulty with the coronavirus epidemic but if they understood they would telephone you first to have a chat about the difficulties rather than send you an awful letter. I asked on the day to speak to the manager but I was told she was in a meeting so had to email. They never replied to it. All the best x

NWA6
NWA6 in reply to SamanneJ

Sorry to hear this SamanneJ, this is not right, we shouldn’t have to disclose personal information to reception/office staff. That is unlawful.

SamanneJ
SamanneJ in reply to NWA6

Thank you. It's awful as I have a complex health condition as stated by the GPs yet you seem to have to go through the gateway of the reception staff. For over a year I had repeat utis and never saw staff, just dropped off samples and collected prescription from pharmacy.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to SamanneJ

This practice has now been stopped Samanne. You have to see / consult with a doctor and take the sample with you.

SamanneJ
SamanneJ in reply to Hidden

Mine was so frequent they didn't always do this, thankfully I eventually had some antibiotics which worked x

Hidden
Hidden in reply to SamanneJ

Yes I had them frequently and just used to drop a sample into the nurse - but now the doctor has to be seen.

Miffie
Miffie in reply to NWA6

That’s interesting as at my current and previous ( when I lived elsewhere) surgeries the GPs advise that receptionists are required to ask for info in order to ensure we get the best solution. Mostly it is to identify a need for urgent call from GP or not. All details are passed to the duty doctor who then calls or has a nurse do this or even request reception staff to call patient with a request for a sample/ blood tests or a timed phone consultation. I had no idea this was unlawful. I have in the past discussed GDPR in relation to test results so no worries about ensuring things are done as they should be. Where is the legislation I can refer to a address this issue please? Many thanks.

bantam12
bantam12 in reply to Miffie

It's not "unlawful", they are trained to ask so they can prioritise and take the appropriate action, if you don't wish to tell them the problem they should accept that.

Miffie
Miffie in reply to bantam12

I have had no problems to date, I can’t imagine any in future but who knows? However as NWA6 stated it was unlawful I was interested to know which legislation applies. My husband says I am annoying as I check my facts. 🤣🤣

NWA6
NWA6 in reply to Miffie

Miffie. I believe that many GP surgeries are acting unlawfully atm, many have and are making it more difficult to have face to face appointments. The practise of not issuing appointments or making it difficult to get appointments unless a reason is given to the receptionist, may come under discrimination.

We should be able to say, sorry it’s personal or I’d rather not say should be enough but the receptionists are being told to get a reason. The narrative being used is that it is for the benefit of the patient, getting them to be seen or spoken to by the right person.

Personally I do believe that there is a place for phonecall appointments or zoom calls but that doesn’t suit everyone or every condition.

However, patients should not be unable to get appointments or put to the back of the queue for a phone consultation just because they don’t want to give out personal information.

Miffie
Miffie in reply to NWA6

There is no legislation that makes this unlawful, it’s just your opinion. Obviously we are all entitled to our own opinions. It must be nearly 10 years since I attended a surgery where reception staff asked why a patient asked for an appointment. Almost every call was put in for triage by the duty doctor. I was only ever asked why I was calling , for me saying, cough, upset stomach, or some other problem was of no consequence. However if it upsets others then saying it is personal is probably worth doing.

Hidden
Hidden in reply to NWA6

If you tell them that it’s a personal matter and you only wish to discuss it with a doctor they should accept that. Many people just accept that they have to provide the information.

I cannot imagine how distressed you are feeling. I agree wholeheartedly with Hidden . It is always much better to deal with things face to face. Matters such as this really benefit by being addressed immediately. Contact today to arrange a meeting.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to Miffie

thank you. I have indeed done this. appreciate your advice and support

I am really sorry for you, I've been in similar situations, not with GP surgeries, and know how awful it feels.You have said you did nothing wrong. Do you think the problem might be that they feel you are not hearing them when they try to tell you what about your behaviour has upset them? It sounds to me as if they are so focused on their own upset they are not aware of your feelings. In which case, might you make progress if you practise deep listening, as in meeting up in a very open-hearted way, prepared to hear what they are struggling with and what they have found difficult when communicating with you? It might be hard to hear, but it might also be very worth-while, if you are strong enough to sit and listen to how they feel.

I believe all that you have said but am trying to think into the heads of the other people.

fiftyone
fiftyone in reply to thyr01d

that sounds fine but I know in one case what they thought and they jumped to conclusions. They won't l isten to me! I have asked the m anager to list the things which they think are a problem. It's no good them just saying my behaviour was 'inappropriate' or 'inconsiderate'. I've got to know exactly what I did or said because I don't always know. In one case where I do know, I've explained to them why they are wrong but they refuse to see.

thyr01d
thyr01d in reply to fiftyone

I know exactly what you mean and wish you the best of luck in resolving this.

You may also like...