UK GPs Misdiagnosing Patients Because Appointments Too Short

The standard appointment slot is 10 minutes’ long.

KUALA LUMPUR, July 25 — More than one-third of United Kingdom general practitioners (GPs) in a survey said they were misdiagnosing patients because of insufficient time to assess them. 

The Telegraph reported that a poll of 200 family doctors also found that 95 per cent of respondents said appointment slots for patients, which are usually about 10 minutes, were too short to perform their work safely.

“It has been clear for some time that the standard 10-minute appointment is no longer fit for purpose,” Royal College of GPs chairwoman Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard was quoted saying. 

“As GPs, we want to be able to deliver truly holistic care to our patients.  

“But when you consider that very few patients now come to us with just one health-related condition, and that we are increasingly up against the clock in consultations, this is simply not possible and in some cases it could be unsafe.”

The RCPG has reportedly warned about a shortage of 6,000 GPs.

More than 70 per cent in the survey by law firm Slater and Gordon said they needed at least 15 minutes to properly examine a patient, with 30 per cent calling for at least 20 minutes.

The GPs surveyed reportedly said having more time to see patients was their biggest priority, when asked what would improve their lives at work.

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