Author Topic: NHS clinic access  (Read 1279 times)

Fiz

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #30 on: 06 Dec 2021 08:28AM »
Thing is, masks protects others rather than yourself mostly so medical professionals have a duty to protect you by wearing their masks. I totally understand why a professional may choose to write down what they want to say rather than lower their mask due to their concern about wanting to protect you from Covid especially as they are much more likely to be carrying the virus and breathing it out as they are in close contact with so many people. Personally I think there's an argument for someone signing to say that they'd like the health professional to lower their mask and understand that this increases their risk of getting Covid from the health professional but also as there's also a smaller risk of them getting Covid from you then by lowering their masks they are increasing the risk of gaining the virus and passing it on to their following patients so it's not just the risk to you but it increases risk to all of their patients when they do so. I think clear screens are the way to go with a face to face desk for people with hearing difficulties and if they had one such room for consults with hearing impaired patients the GP could move to that pre-booked room to see the individual needing to see their faces which would solve the problem in GP surgeries and at reception area desks but not for dentists who are very up close and personal. I think this pandemic is hardest of all for the hearing impaired than any other group of people. I can't wait for it all to be history  :f_hug:




Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #31 on: 06 Dec 2021 09:42AM »
I find it difficult the way my hearing aids distort what people say, but thinking of what Ally goes through puts my difficulties in perspective.

I think screens can be really good, although they have to be properly done.  There's a bit of research that seems to suggest that in some workplaces, they've caused problems where there's been enough screening to reduce airflow, but not enough to form a proper barrier, so it leads to what I think of as puddling of the virus.

But you'd think that if someone at national level got their act together, they could have come up with something suitable.   I'm thinking how there are various sorts of hazmat equipment used in relation to other things.  Sort of see-through tent-like things.  I bet in this day and age a sort of cubicle thing would be 3D printable.
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Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #32 on: 06 Dec 2021 01:11PM »
Thinking of what Ally goes through, I think if I were sitting with a GP who knew me and I was totally reliant on lipreading, I'd be in tears.  Here's where I'd meet OtE half way on something (but I don't think he'd meet me halfway) which is that while I don't think people should be obliged to use official sign interpreters as he's said here, I do think we need far wider availability of sign interpreters, even if in some places, for want of better, it's a pool of local volunteers for urgent appointments.

I say that as someone who's acted as an impromptu oral interpreter between a neighbour and a doctor.  My knowledge of some languages is basic, so we had to make do with me translating the doctor's English questions into Urdu and translating my neighbour's Punjabi responses into English.  (Sort of like Italian + Spanish or like Dutch + German.)  But it was enough for what was needed to get an urgent visit followed by more professional translation help. 

There also needs to be more recognition by senior staff who set the rules as to people needing help rather than blanket 'go into your appointment alone' stuff. 

I don't think in many places, and I mean even before the pandemic, there's enough recognition that people may need psychological support; or for others, to blend concepts, a 'dementia-speak interpreter' or a 'psychotic delusion interpreter'.  In relation to the latter, in all seriousness, I believe that a lot of psychotic delusions actually make perfect sense if you see them as metaphors for what others perceive as reality.  If you know someone, you can often 'translate' the delusional stuff into the reality it symbolises. 

When I get like this, depressed & stressed => longwinded, I used to be labelled manic and given loads of meds to damp me down, so I got even more depressed, talked even more, and so the circle would continue.  This isn't "I don't get manic", this is "Me rabbiting and going off on tangents is me feeling rough, being depressed and doing my best to cope.  Thank you for helping me, folks, because I can mentally take you with me to my clinic appointment later this week.

And I'm sorry (slightly), Ally, but I'm going to picture you coming with me and if I have any communication problems, teaching me the signs for a range of expletives.  But I know the sign for "It's not my fault for falling over, you barged into me, so stop giving me grief."  I use the traditional two-finger one but I understand the modern one is the middle finger.  Oh, that's not BSL?  Oh well, people seem to understand it anyway.
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Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #33 on: 06 Dec 2021 04:04PM »
I was about to leave the house when I got a call on my mobile.  I couldn't work out what it was to begin with, thinking it was a wrong number.  Then I realised it was the clinic about my appointment.  I couldn't work out to begin with whether they were saying they were cancelling my appointment or confirming it but finally worked out they were cancelling it.

I can't get my head round how so many people can't get their heads round the notion that some of us only use mobiles for emergencies and texts and, in my case, taxi service.  Dial.  Incomprehensible speech.  Pause.  I press 1 to be picked up at home, 2 to be picked up where they dropped me off.  I don't need to know what the machine is saying, unless it goes on for longer than usual, which tells me to phone them from my landline to find out what it's telling me.
« Last Edit: 06 Dec 2021 04:52PM by Sunny Clouds »
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Fiz

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #34 on: 07 Dec 2021 07:56AM »
I have to say the fact that it was ally's own GP that didn't respond adequately and was totally ignorant of needs totally shocked me. It makes me so grateful for my GP, although I always have been, because she's so good and knows me very well. I think writing to the practice manager might be an idea if feeling able to.

Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #35 on: 07 Dec 2021 09:46AM »
It is shocking.  I wouldn't have thought of writing to the practice manager, though, but that's because my GP has a traditional practice, so the manager would be employed by the GP and all they could do would be to put the letter on their boss's desk for him to deal with.

But if it's one of these new big chain practices taken over by private companies, then I suppose it would go up the non-doctor heirarchy. 
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Fiz

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #36 on: 07 Dec 2021 10:50AM »
My GP surgery is independent but the practice manager deals with complaints there. I really hope the surgery remains independent, all the other surgeries in my town are part of the same chain and I am aware that their service quality has dropped significantly since joining the chain.

Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #37 on: 07 Dec 2021 11:42AM »
My GP is past retirement age and he's a really good GP. Sadly not perfect, but I've a suspicion he's a human being (!)  His is a teaching practice, so there are always some registrars (or whatever the modern term for them is).  He's got a couple of long-established salaried GPs there, too, and I'm hoping that when he retires, they'll take over.

As regards complaints, I suppose I see these things on a spectrum because of the variety of set-ups.  My GP and his practice manager have been working together so long, if he wasn't married, I could think she was his wife.  Usually I only have a word with her if I'm trying to save my GP time, but then she's an amazing community networker, asking patients to help one another.

It may be naff, but I carry everywhere in my handbag a thank you card from them and at their request I posted a compliment on NHS choices.  So I suppose for me, with my GP's practice, my instinct would be quiet grumble to the practice manager or formal letter to the GP  (which with that GP I'd probably put a marker on saying 'not to be added to official records' because I'm so grateful to him for all he's done).

But another practice could function very differently and prompt a very different course of action.  That's where I value people's instincts for what the power structure is of something like their GP practice.  For some GP practices (and other organisations) you go in hard.

But the structures are so
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Fiz

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #38 on: 07 Dec 2021 01:13PM »
I would have no clue who the practice manager is at my surgery and I have never contacted one. The office staff are all behind the scenes here so I think the only way people would know the practice manager's name is if they felt the need to complain but I am not sure.

Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #39 on: 07 Dec 2021 02:29PM »
I think that's one of the difficulties with trying to sort out problems in the modern NHS - not just fragmented, but the same sort of service operating very differently in different areas.  I don't mean personalities or little things, I mean down to management/power structure.
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Fiz

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #40 on: 07 Dec 2021 03:49PM »
I'm thankful that I have never had cause to complain or seek change to the services from my GP so as far as I am aware the system here may work really well, I certainly don't hear differently. Even mentioning to my GP my difficulty queuing for my flu jab had her offer to give me next year's during a routine appointment. I just find they can't do enough to help you. That's what saddens me about ally's GP who appears to be total opposite of that.

Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #41 on: 07 Dec 2021 05:49PM »
I saw my GP a couple of years back about something and was really put out by his response.  He's a doctor who usually takes his patients seriously.   My difficulty, though, is that I grew up with parents who never seemed to believe anything I said about my health, and then when I was getting more assertive as an adult, I landed in the modern mental health system which, to use a word that some might consider over-used, gaslit me. 

They behaved throughout as if my understanding of what was wrong with me was of no consequence.  There was a point about 15 years ago when I had postviral fatigue and they just put the symptoms down to my manic depression.  (This isn't "I'm not bipolar" this is "I had postviral fatigue as well as bipolar.)  A different GP also expressed despair over the HRT clinic and psychiatrist both attributing my PMT to my bipolar disorder.

So when my GP seemed not to believe me a couple of years back, I didn't push it.  Yet if I'd gone back and asked something else as if it was a new aspect, I'm sure he'd have dealt with it kindly. 

Since then, a long term friend (30 years) has told me off (in a kind, supportive way) for under-emphasising serious health problems.

I've got a real linguistic bee in my bonnet about miscomunication between health professionals and patients, usually by assumptions over how people phrase things and what jargon they use, plus the unspoken messages people health professionals give by their actions.  So whilst we can see what happened to Ally as indicative of inadequacy adapting for Deaf patients, it goes deeper than that.  That's not to diminish what Ally's going through, it's to say she's got an extra mountain to climb, but if the health service properly addressed communication with patients, it would benefit lots of hearing patietns as well as deaf patients. 
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Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #42 on: 07 Dec 2021 08:33PM »
I've written to the clinic about what happened to me.  Having thought about what was said here, I decided to write not to the consultant but to the senior manager in the organisation.  I expect it'll end up on a junior administrator's desk.
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Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #43 on: 08 Dec 2021 01:33PM »
Part of me wonders whether I should go private.  The trouble is that the service I was referred to is provided to the NHS by a privte health company.

I have a devastating sense of loss of trust, that adds to my bad experiences in relation to a range of professionals, tradesmen, public services, utilities etc.  I am coming close to not trusting anyone about anything.  So difficult.
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Sunny Clouds

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Re: NHS clinic access
« Reply #44 on: 08 Dec 2021 05:41PM »
I just discoverd a text on my phone (normally kept switched off, usually looked at once a day but less if I'm not expecting any texts) confirming the appointment that the previous telephone call had cancelled.

If you're wondering why my phone was switched on to get the phone call, occasionally I use it as an alarm.  I was very, very startled to get an incoming call from anyone the other day, much less the clinic. 

I really, really wish I knew how to get the message through to more people that we don't all keep mobiles switched on all the time or use them for casual conversation.  For me, my mobile is an  'emergency' device, psychologically akin to an alarm/siren, coupled with with a 'letterbox I check a couple of times a week'.  I used to keep it on all the time, but then started getting spam texts and I'm not joking when I say it's normal for me to have a panic attack when it rings for a text or call (as opposed to the noise the alarm makes).

But then despite my trying to explain clearly, even good friends can't get their heads round the fact that I struggle to make out messages on my landline answering machine, so messages have to be shouted loudly, "It's Thingummy Wotsit calling on Wednesday.  Not urgent.  Not!"

Some people say buy a smartphone, but I don't think I should have to.  I make so few calls that last year, I got a text earlier this year telling me that if I didn't call someone or send a text, I'd lose my number, so I called a call centre and cut the call as soon as the automated wotsit answered the call.

I'm feeling very, very shaken by all this.

It's after dark, so I'm going to go for a walk.  The tears don't show in the dark.  It's wet and windy so by the time I get to a shop to buy the calorific junk food treat I want psychologically, people can think my eyes are just wet from the weather. 
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)