bloody gp's bloody web page aaaaargh!

in the last dozen or so attempts to get a bloody repeat prescription, about half have made me want to tear my hair out. just as well it’s not my blood pressure tablets i need. aaaargh! if anyone gets through this, well done, but i need to vent…

i go online to their site, but it won’t give me access, AGAIN! so then it tells you to try again later, this time there’s also a sign saying that there will be no use of the site today, for an hour, about 4 hours from now, not now! the sane thing would be to be able to phone up and say that i can’t get on to their site and order it, then and there, by phone, but no… they don’t do that any more, it HAS to be online, on their site, which doesn’t bloody work half the time. i was told that i could just pop into the surgery to order it, i tell them i have MS and ‘popping in’ isn’t exactly easy. it’s not as if i can fib about my MS, it’s the bloody doctors, they can check! so then they tell me to send it in an e-mail, so i do, but then i have to phone up to check that their whole computer system hasn’t crashed AGAIN, which it does from time to time, apparently, and then i need to send the e-mail again, and phone to check AGAIN. so that’s 1, 2 or 3 phone calls, rather than 1, to just order the bloody things.

i type slowly, so i keep trying to get on to the docs site, but i just get this damn message, along with the warning about not being able to use it hours from now, it is now 10:29am:

  • Sorry, the service is not available

    Your doctor’s practice did not reply to your login request. This can happen if there is a network problem, which is temporary, or if the practice computer system is not running.

    All practice systems close for a short period every night for housekeeping, if you see this message at night this is the most likely cause of the problem, and normal service will be resumed as soon as all essential work is complete. The exact time and duration of the nightly work varies from practice to practice, most practices can finish housekeeping in around 2 hours.
    If you see this message during the day and it persists for more than an hour please contact your practice. If they cannot resolve the issue they will contact the Access team.
    We apologise for the inconvenience

this is all a hell of a long way from helpful! the bit at the end about contacting them about the fault is rollocks ! they effectively just brush it off as the patients problem, every time. i only want one type of med, this time. are many other people finding this? if anyone made it to the end.

wendy x

Hi Wendy

Ring and order…you can do that. What about people without computer?

Ring the practice manager because someone is telling fibs.


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With my gp I find if the computers are off the phones are usually off too, fortunately my gp still offers the telephone prescription service (for now). Can understand your annoyance, agree with Blossom, something a bit strange about not being able to get repeat prescription via phone, is this not part of the service the NHS/PCT are supposed to offer (not sure if that’s correct, don’t keep up with things - should start tho).

Hope you manage to get your prescription ordered.

Cherry x

thanks blossom and cherry, miracle of miracles, it started working again, normally it stays of for a couple of days. i’ve tried to get various different people at my doc’s to take an order over the phone, but they won’t do it. i’m a bit of a wuss about asking for the practice manager the general staff are intimidating enough. there’s a boots in the same building, but i don’t really want to chance them again, they pretty much accused my daughter of having already picked up a prescription for me, when they had just put it in the wrong place for pick up. they’re both in this beautiful new building, but give me back the horrible 1960’s health centre and independent pharmacy that ran perfectly for decades, any day… and now i’ve turned into an even older woman than i am , sorry.

at the start of this post i was tempted to put ‘thanks cherryblossom’

wendy x

Hi Wendy,

Firstly, I disagree with you that this is “not MS” (as you have tagged it). It’s so very MS! Needing the damn meds in the first place, not being able to just “pop in” and sort it, and becoming increasingly panicky and frustrated because you cannot arrange something you know you have to have!

I have it nearly every time with the damn prescriptions, though so far, it seems to be my chemist that (regularly) screws up - nothing to do with the doctor. I have taken to ordering them earlier and earlier in advance, but somehow still end up in a cold sweat, wondering if I’m going to be left spending a night without painkillers - or, even worse, having to go cold turkey from a drug (i.e. Baclofen) that says must NOT be stopped suddenly, and abrupt cessation may cause convulsions etc. I am alone in the house, and they wonder why I get “a bit cross” when people can’t organize a batch of Baclofen for me in a fortnight, and I’m down to last tablets! I imagine myself alone, in pain, and possibly having convulsions - and know there won’t be anybody to call 999! That’s enough to stress anyone out - even if they didn’t already have an illness that reacts badly to stress.

And the “just pop in” phrase has to be one of my all-time most hated. No, I can’t just bloody “pop in”. I have a debilitating illness, and I don’t drive! “Pop in”, for me, means I’ll be gone a couple of hours, and will be standing about in the cold, wind and rain for a bus!

Even a (BUPA) hospital has been guilty of it. “Oh, Miss X - we forgot to do one of your blood tests: could you just ‘pop back’?”

“No, I can’t just ‘pop back’ - I’ve only just got home! And it’s a £16 taxi-ride! You will have to fit it in for when I’m up there for something else anyway!” (That was back in the days before I was diagnosed, when I was regularly at the hospital for something).

But people who’ve always had a car and/or never been ill just don’t get it, do they? “Pop here, pop there, pop everywhere! It’s only a few minutes of your time!”

No it bloody isn’t!

Totally sympathise.



Hi again Wendy

Write or email the practice manager because this isn’t good enough. My husband is chairman of the ‘the patient participation group’ at our practice. Is there one at yours?

Glad it’s sorted now but you can do without the stress.

Love cherryblossom


thanks tina, i seem to remember messaging you when you were being driven to distraction about your baclofen. it isn’t good enough, i know, and it does really add to our stress levels, which is bad enough for a person without health problems. this time i’m ordering tramadol, they only prescribe a couple of weeks worth at a time, so i’m getting low. i’ve tried relying on boots and have had various problems, most recently a prescription mysteriously ‘disappearing’ somewhere between my dr’s and boots, they each blamed the other, on this occasion, it was the doc’s where it ‘reappeared’, on others it’s boots. even before i try to log in to my dr’s site, i feel very tense. lately it seems about 50/50, whether or not something will go wrong.

cherryblossom (that should stick!), thanks, i really should look into ways i can contact the practice without needing to deal with them face to face, i used to be so good at sticking up for myself, but i seem to have become something of a shrinking violet these days, taking the route of least resistance. although they seem to be providing quite a lot of resistance themselves.

i really appreciate that you’ve taken the time to respond to what was a horrible whining rant, boy did i need it though . when yet another problem happened, i immediately thought of coming here, it really helped to vent and helped even more to be understood and advised.

thank you all, again,

wendy xx

Don’t blame the doctors or anyone else using computer systems.

The blame is with the computer systems engineers, who live on cloud nine, and appear to be answerable to no one.

Take care.

Chris R.

I’m glad you got this sorted, its really not good enough though is it. As Cherryblossom #1 said you need to take this further if you can.

Take care

Cherryblossom #2 xx

I work in a GP surgery. We have a policy not to accept script requests over the phone for a number of reasons but would never leave anyone without their meds, especially if there was no way for the patient to order in their usual way for whatever reason, and would help out and accept the request over the phone. There’s always a way for the staff at the surgery to help out, but I guess some people are just not helpful sadly :frowning: you should definitely complain, there’s no need for you to have the added stress and frustration!

Danielle x

thanks chris r, the computer ‘genius’ loonies are in charge of the dr’s asylum, oh joy! all these computer programming/software issues make me feel very old… puts me in mind of back in the 1980’s and my parents needing help to change the time on a digital clock or set their VHS to record, i’ve now reached the technological scrapheap. why oh why can’t they just use a bloody phone again. yes, i have reached old f@rt status!

cherryblossom#2, thanks, i do really need to girder my loins, but i’m beginning to feel like i’m trapped in some kind of dr’s/boots related groundhog day.

there’s a spring in the air, what with all the cherry blossom around! my (2blackcats) name’s more halloween like.

wendy xx

thanks danielle, sorry about your diagnosis (dx), one of the problems about phoning my gp’s practice, is being stuck in a queue, and of course, once i’m at this point, it’s using up my pay-as-you-go mobile credit too, as well as simply being really frustrating. i’ve tried several times to get a prescr. order via the phone and every person just gives a flat ‘no, it can’t be done over the phone’ answer. i’ve also been told to get boots to order it for me, but that just adds another set of potential problems, because this particular branch is about as much use as a chocolate teapot! all i ever want to do is limit any contact with either of them to the barest minimum. i despair of the lot of them, i really do.

it really helps to be able to rant about it though, thanks again to everyone for responding.

wendy xx

I was only diagnosed in Nov and started started tecfidera yesterday. It was picked up on quite quickly due to working at the surgery, I’m lucky. I’m feeling quite positive and I’m well at the moment.

It’s so frustrating! There is so much that your surgery can do to help you, you just need to get in touch with the right person, but it shouldn’t be like that. Write to the practice manager and tell them your concerns, they won’t do anything to fix the problem unless they know about it. You will probably find that the manager and GPs will support you and do all they can to help xx

AT LAST! - l have managed to get my mothers surgery/pharmacy to deliver her medication - monthly - and put into a easy to see and use container so that she knows exactly what and when she should be taking her meds. She is 91. And having a daughter like me who cannot walk unaided - makes it so difficult as l cannot ‘pop’ into the surgery.

The first delivery was a problem - Mum did not want to open the door to the strange man from the pharmacy. So now they are delivered to us - and my husband pops round with them. With live just around the corner. l shall arrange for the chap to arrive when one of us is there and introduce him to her. We have told her not to open her door to strangers - so thats backed fired on us. One step forward and two back. We shall get over this l am sure.