Referrals a waste of time and money

I am forced to spend my time going to see my GP for no other reason than to get him to make a referral

Ever wonder why the health care budget keeps going up? I hope my story will help to shed some light on this.

Four years ago I had a knee replacement. I had a number of follow-up appointments and was told I would need to come back for a three year follow-up appointment in February of this year. When I called to make an appointment, I was told that I needed to get a new referral from my general practitioner. I asked why this was needed and was told ‘this is just the way it is done’ and that if I wanted my follow-up appointment I would have to get a new referral.

I called my GP’s office, explained that I needed a new referral so that I could get a follow-up appointment with my surgeon, and was told that I would need to make an appointment to see my GP, otherwise he could not make the referral. I asked if this couldn’t just be done by phone and was told no.

So now I am forced to spend my time going to see my GP for no other reason than to get him to make a referral for a follow-up appointment that I should have been able to make without involving him in the first place.

My GP will no doubt be billing MSP for an office visit I didn’t need and for a referral to the surgeon.

My point is that my surgeon’s office has a record of who I am, of what services he has provided to me and when they were provided. And he requested that I call and make an appointment for a three year follow-up.

Surely something can be done to streamline this process and save us taxpayers some time and money.

Bruce Cline

Oak Bay