M511 – Missed GP Appointments Motion 2018 Watch

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Saracen's Fez
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M511 – Missed GP Appointments Motion 2018, TSR Labour Party
This House:–

(1) is concerned about the number of GP appointments being missed by patients, usually without any notice being given to the surgery, and the unnecessary cost to the National Health Service that results.

(2) calls upon the Government to institute a system of national appointment reminders across NHS England, providing reminders by SMS or email of GP appointments, including information of how to cancel if the appointment time is no longer convenient.
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Life_peer
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I remember a very similar bill to this effect and it was ours so yeah, we can just pass that.
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Andrew97
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Makes perfect sense.

Should it not already exist, which evidence posted below and above me suggests is the case.
Last edited by Andrew97; 8 months ago
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CoolCavy
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Our GP already has this. They text you when your appointment is and remind you a day before. There is also a number you can text to say cancel.
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CatusStarbright
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I'm fairly sure this is already pretty universal in some form of other.

I'd actually be open to having a £20 fine imposed for missed appointments without valid reason.
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Baron of Sealand
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The TSR Labour Party is now behaving like the now-dead TSR Green Party when the party only had one member doing anything, and only posting motions from time to time.

Except barnetlad was actually writing fresh motions.
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Rakas21
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[field defaultattr=][/field]

Aye.

As LP has pointed out, a solution will be presented as part of a future health bill.
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meenu89
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My GP and the local hospital do this already.
They also have figures and the associated costs for missed appointments, it is staggering and does make you think.
Last edited by meenu89; 8 months ago
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Jammy Duel
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As per above, already common, this also will not solve the problem, if you want to solve the problem you charge for missed appointments, better still charge for appointments whether missed or not (with an added penalty for those missed) to deal with the massive over usage of GPs which stems from people going to the GP over nothing
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ZombieTheWolf
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(Original post by CatusStarbright)
I'm fairly sure this is already pretty universal in some form of other.

I'd actually be open to having a £20 fine imposed for missed appointments without valid reason.
Maaan, now my anxiety is gonna put me in debt!
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by ZombieTheWolf)
Maaan, now my anxiety is gonna put me in debt!
That's a valid reason though, providing you cancelled and didn't just not turn up idk why you would be fined. That's how it works at my GP anyway.
If people just don't turn up and don't cancel I think they should be fined cos someone else could have had that appointment
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CatusStarbright
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(Original post by ZombieTheWolf)
Maaan, now my anxiety is gonna put me in debt!
If you cancel in advance and say why you can't attend then you should not be fined.
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ecolier
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Please don't advocate a (blanket) fine system for people missing appointments.

I studied sociology and health economics as part of Medicine and it is usually the poorest, most dependent members of the society who cannot afford to come (time / childcare / transport arrangements etc. etc. - they are most prone to external factors).

By all means, fine the "forgetful rich" but that's quite rare. When I worked in an affluent area the DNA (Did Not Attend = missed appointment) rate is very low, now I work in a deprived area and the rates are sky high. Some London hospitals literally overbook their clinics, relying on their DNA rates - if everyone turned up, the clinic will be untenable.

I advocate text reminders or putting on appointment letters (or text) that each missed appointment will cost the NHS £160 (our trust states this) but not fining people, because ultimately it may discourage those most at risk and needs our help the most.

:ta: I'll leave now.
Last edited by ecolier; 8 months ago
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CatusStarbright
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(Original post by ecolier)
Please don't advocate a (blanket) fine system for people missing appointments.

I studied sociology and health economics as part of Medicine and it is usually the poorest, most dependent members of the society who cannot afford to come (time / childcare / transport arrangements etc. etc. - they are most prone to external factors).

By all means, fine the "forgetful rich" but that's quite rare. When I worked in an affluent area the DNA (Did Not Attend = missed appointment) rate is very low, now I work in a deprived area and the rates are sky high. Some London hospitals literally overbook their clinics, relying on reliable DNA rates.

I advocate texts / putting on appointment letters (or text) that each missed appointment will cost the NHS £160 (our trust states this) but not fining people, because ultimately it may discourage those most at risk and needs our help the most.

:ta: I'll leave now.
You raise an intersting point - why do you think the poorest in society are the ones who are the biggest cause of this problem?
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ecolier
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(Original post by CatusStarbright)
You raise an intersting point - why do you think the poorest in society are the ones who are the biggest cause of this problem?
Because of their reliance on external factors. The richer patients can afford childcare and taking time off work, for example. They may also drive. The poorer will have to rely on public transport, which can be cancelled; or their own method of transport which could be unreliable. They may also not be given time off work, or be asked to do something on short notice. Finally they may also not know how (or have the means) to cancel appointments or know that it is a waste not to cancel it.

Ironically, fining people will punish those who cannot actually afford it.
Last edited by ecolier; 8 months ago
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by ecolier)
Because of their reliance on external factors. The richer patients can afford childcare and taking time off work, for example. They may also drive. The poorer will have to rely on public transport, which can be cancelled; or their own method of transport which could be unreliable. They may also not be given time off work, or be asked to do something on short notice. Finally they may also not know how (or have the means) to cancel appointments or know that it is a waste not to cancel it.

Ironically, fining people will punish those who cannot actually afford it.
It takes about 5 seconds to text CANCEL to the appropriate number, what does being poor have to do with anything.
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ecolier
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(Original post by CoolCavy)
It takes about 5 seconds to text CANCEL to the appropriate number, what does being poor have to do with anything.
Ok, you win. I am not going to argue. Fine everyone who don't come. Clearly they are doing it on purpose.
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by ecolier)
Ok, you win. I am not going to argue. Fine everyone who don't come. Clearly they are doing it on purpose.
Did I say they were doing it on purpose? :rolleyes:
Clearly occasionally it's going to slip your mind, maybe impose a three strike and you get a fine type of thing, or have a system where the poorest don't pay fines similar to the HC1 system. Something has to be done about the population at large not attending appointments and if people can't be bothered to take 4 seconds out of their day to text a number then they should be fined. NHS waitlists are astronomical and people need these appointments.
No need to be churlish about it, it's not about 'winning' it's having a discussion
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ecolier
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(Original post by CoolCavy)
Did I say they were doing it on purpose? :rolleyes:
Clearly occasionally it's going to slip your mind, maybe impose a three strike and you get a fine type of thing, or have a system where the poorest don't pay fines similar to the HC1 system. Something has to be done about the population at large not attending appointments and if people can't be bothered to take 4 seconds out of their day to text a number then they should be fined. NHS waitlists are astronomical and people need these appointments.
No need to be churlish about it, it's not about 'winning' it's having a discussion
Well you did say "What does being poor have to do with anything" - the answer, if you are looking to have a proper discussion, is of course everything.

Here are only a few points, out of much more:
(1) They may not even have a phone / phone contract (probably unlikely, but some could), or their numbers could change often
(2) Some may not have an address / they move often as they cannot afford to stay at one place for a long time - hence the post may not reach them
(3) They may not know how to operate a phone
(4) As I said above, it's all about the external factors. It is so much more likely, when you are poor, that you would prioritise other things before an appointment. Unless it is virtually life-threatening - going to work and earning for your children / yourself to eat is always more important. Also, things are more likely out of your control when you are poor - manager asking you for an extra shift / debts etc. etc. All more important than cancelling a GP appointment.

It's all increased likelihood, I am not saying everyone who's poor will experience all of the above. We need to address the cause and not go and impose fines. 3 strikes is fine - but remember it is the most vulnerable that we are striking.

We also learnt the screening is well attended by people who are richer, and poorly attended by people who are poorer (and more likely to have the disease!).
Last edited by ecolier; 8 months ago
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by ecolier)
Well you did say "What does being poor have to do with anything" - the answer, if you are looking to have a proper discussion, is of course everything.

(1) They may not even have a phone / phone contract (probably unlikely, but some could), or their numbers could change often
(2) Some may not have an address / they move often as they cannot afford to stay at one place for a long time
(3) They may not know how to operate a phone
(4) As I said above, it's all about the external factors. It is so much more likely, when you are poor, that you would prioritise other things before an appointment. Unless it is virtually life-threatening - going to work and earning for your children / yourself to eat is always more important. Also, things are more likely out of your control when you are poor - manager asking you for an extra shift / debts etc. etc.

It's all increased likelihood, I am not saying everyone who's poor will experience all of the above. We need to address the cause and not go and impose fines. 3 strikes is fine - but remember it is the most vulnerable that we are striking.

We also learnt the screening is well attended by people who are richer, and poorly attended by people who are poorer (and more likely to have the disease!).
Then make them exempt as I have suggested.
Don't just base policy on one group in society look at the bigger picture, of which it's a massive issues. At my uni GP I see tonnes of international students not turning up, as they are international clearly they have some cash behind them.
And no I was not suggesting they do it on purpose :rolleyes: a fine would be an incentive to remember
You aren't striking the most vulnerable you are striking or fining everyone
Last edited by CoolCavy; 8 months ago
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