About: GPs in High Weald Lewes Havens South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust / NHS 111 Uckfield Hospital

(as the patient),

'Quite unable to obtain appointment to see GP  in the foreseeable future when severe back and neck  pain was experienced  early in the week. By Saturday morning a blistery rash had developed.

Due to pain and discomfort I sought advice (at 09:20 Hrs.) of  pharmacist (pharmacy  attached to the GPs surgery). I was advised to see a doctor a.s.a.p. As it happened that the surgery was actually open (with an empty waiting area)  and I explained to the receptionist my need to see a doctor. While sympathetic, the receptionist stated that they had been told  to admit only those who  having pre-arranged appointments. Upon my urging, the receptionist did leave their desk and go to consult someone. They returned with the advice that I should go to A&E.

I then drove to the small local hospital, this having a limited A&E/minor injuries unit. I was sympathetically received and after brief examination, advised that I needed to be seen by a doctor  but, unfortunately, none was presently on duty at the hospital. Having recounted that I had been to the GP's surgery and found it open but unable to see me, a member of the hospital staff then attempted to call the surgery, only to hear an  answerphone message stating that it was closed. It was then suggested that I call 111.

However, before calling 111, I returned to the GPs surgery, where the waiting room was again empty, and stated that I had been to A&E , again advised that I needed be seen by a doctor but that none was presently on duty.  I was again advised by the GP's receptionist that I could not be seen without an appointment. They did however offer the use of a 'phone to call 111.  I elected to make the call when back at my home. 

By the time I reached home, some  two hours had been fruitlessly spent seeking help. I then called 111 to be treated with faultless concern and thorough analysis of problem/symptoms, etc. The conclusion was that I needed to see a doctor; that one would be asked to call a.s.a.p. I received a return call approximately 2 hours later and was offered an as immediate as possible appointment with a doctors' surgery some 15 miles distant where I was seen immediately upon arrival. I received concerned examination, positive conclusion and prescription for relevant medication.

111 and 24-hour doctor service MARVELLOUS..