So GPs express their concerns about the pressures on A&E facilities at local hospitals at the same time as the Care Quality Com-mission condemns those facilities in the area of the Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust.
If GPs were to demonstrate a more responsible and responsive attitude to the needs of patients then there would be less reason for those patients, in sheer desperation, to present themselves at A&E.
I have very recent experience of an elderly person becoming unconscious at around 6.15 pm.
A telephone call to the GP elicited the response to take her to the walk-in centre at King George Hospital in Goodmayes.
What the GP could not tell me was how I might get an unconscious person from a wheelchair into the front seat of my car.
I was told to call an ambulance. I did so and am very pleased to say that not only did an ambulance arrive within 15 minutes of the call, but the patient was on her way to hospital in less than half an hour from that call.
The remuneration package for GPs, cobbled together under the last government, sees them very handsomely rewarded. In return, they work the equivalent of a four day week, with no responsibility for their patients “out of hours”.
No wonder there are such heavy demands on A&E for apparently minor reasons.
Morris Hickey, Long Green, Chigwell.