GP announcement welcomed as twice as hard now to book a GP appointment than it was five years ago say over 50s
The Conservatives announcement that access to a GP will be available 7 days a week following next years’ General Election will be welcome news to young and old alike, many of whom have found it increasingly difficult to get an appointment. Saga’s director of communications Paul Green commented
“So many people, but especially the elderly, depend on a friendly GP as their first point of contact with the health service when they feel unwell, but if an appointment’s not available, their health and peace of mind can suffer. It’s worrying is that many conditions could be missed if patients don’t get an appointment when they need it, and an early diagnosis in many cases can be all important to the treatment and recovery of the individual.
“Our research amongst 11,000 over 50s earlier this year shows that the over 50s find it twice as hard now to book a GP appointment, compared to five years ago. One in five even told us that they have to wait more than a week to see their GP. However, for those still in work or with conditions that they feel might be serious, this could result in them either waiting longer than is acceptable to see their GP, or worse still putting the appointment off altogether.
“GPs are constantly being asked to do more for less, and it is clear that we face an unprecedented crisis in our NHS and Social Care systems. I’m sure many people will want more than just promises, they will want the detail and reassurance about how this can actually be delivered.”