Dutch doctors' emergency phone lines criticised
Patients complain of being unable to get through to their GPs or having to wait over 10 minutes on the phone.11 September 2008
THE NETHERLANDS -- The Health Care Inspectorate and patients' consumer groups say GPs are unacceptably difficult to contact in emergencies during office hours.
More than a quarter of people who phone emergency numbers for their family doctors are unable to get through. Towards the end of the afternoon, the number increases to 40 percent.
Doctors are also difficult to get hold of for routine cases, with 40 percent of callers having to wait over 10 minutes before getting someone on the line.
The National Family Practitioners' Association admits there are problems, but says an injection of cash is needed to sort the problem out.
[Radio Netherlands / Expatica]