GPs Restricted By Time Constraints

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A survey of doctors suggests appointment times are too short and may affect their ability to diagnose patients' conditions.

The survey of 200 GPs shows most (89%) would like 20 minutes per patient - double the current 10 minutes each.

A recent survey found that the current doctors’ appointment time of 10 minutes is too short and may affect their ability to do their jobs.

The survey of 200 GPs shows most (89%) would like 20 minutes per patient - double the current 10 minutes each.

A lack of time with patients affected the ability of 43% of those surveyed to diagnose and 57% said time restraints had worsened in the past five years.

Half believe short appointment times affect their ability to do their job while just 7% are confident it has no impact.

The study also found that 96% of GPs use the internet for their daily work.

Some 85% use online tools to help them diagnose patients but only 5% say this is because they are pressed for time.

A separate study carried out last month found 63% of people thought NHS appointments were always rushed.

Dr Laurence Buckman, chairman of the BMA's GPs committee, said: "The BMA, and many patients, believe appointment times should be longer because we know GPs would like to have more time to care for their patients."

According to NHS figures, appointment times were 11.7 minutes on average in 2008/09, up from 8.4 in 1992/3.

A spokesman for the Department of Health said: "GPs are best placed to make decisions about the length of their appointments based on their clinical judgment."

Age UK charity also offers commercial products such as travel insurance, with no upper age limit and covers medical conditions where possible”*. Read the original article here: “GPs Restricted By Time Constraints

*] Subject to medical screening and acceptance by underwriters

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