Problems accessing the care she needs
I called my GP surgery this morning to request an appointment with a GP or Practice nurse for emergency contraception and I was made to feel irresponsible and careless. Where in fact this was an accident that occurred whilst using a condom and I as a responsible adult, wanted to take further precautions of protecting against a possible unwanted pregnancy. After being made to feel like this, I was then informed that they had no appointments available for today, this was at 8.38am and to call back tomorrow morning (this would still not guarantee an appointment for tomorrow). I explained that there is a 72 hour period where this type of emergency contraception is most productive and would it be possible to have a telephone consultation, once again this was not available today. The only advise I was given was to attend the A&E Department at a local hospital, who would refer me to the attached Urgent Care Centre or as previously mentioned to call back tomorrow morning. Luckily for me, I seeked alternative ways of receiving this medication within the time limit and went to a pharmacy. My point I am trying to make is, no wonder why there are so many unwanted pregnancies, when people struggle to see their GP, Practice Nurse. For someone who is unable to get time out of work to attend a family planning clinic or for those who are over the age of the local services, or even those that are not made aware of other services, this causes great distress and some may hope that if they forget about it, it will go away. For a those on very low or no income due to education reasons, £25 for one tablet can be expensive. I wonder how many other GP practices deal with situations like this and make their patients feel irresponsible and careless? Maybe there should be a system in place for those who require the emergency contraception and their GP practice is fully booked. If all you have to do is fill out a yes / no form in a pharmacy and are then given the medication, why can this not be implemented at a GP practice for the reception staff to do, afterall they give out condoms.