Letter: A new NHS

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Dr Danny Wallace must live a charmed life down in Devon. Has he ever tried to get through to his GP on the telephone for advice?

As both a consumer and a provider of services within general practice, my experience is that many doctors are only officially available to speak to people on the phone for about half an hour to one hour per day, possibly at a time not convenient for the person ringing in. This assumes you can first get past the efficiently trained receptionist's vetting process. GPs have been required to take on an ever-increasing range of tasks, so they must let go and let others take on certain responsibilities.

Nurses are ideally placed to offer advice on some matters, and to direct people to appropriate help for others.

BRIDGET CLARENCE-SMITH RGN/HV

London N8

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