Man claims he was ‘thrown out of GP surgery for being 5 minutes late’

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A man has been barred from the doctor’s surgery where has been registered since he was a child for being five minutes late for an appointment.

Kevin MacDonald, 49, was refused a later appointment after an emergency bathroom stop meant he was running behind schedule.

Kevin Macdonald who was 5mins late for an appointment with a doctor at Bonnyrigg Health Centre and they removed him from the register

Kevin Macdonald who was 5mins late for an appointment with a doctor at Bonnyrigg Health Centre and they removed him from the register

Now he has been struck off the patient list at Strathesk Medical Practice in Bonnyrigg, Midlothian, after sending a letter of complaint.

He said: “Obviously I was angry but the letter wasn’t abusive, it just laid out all the facts.”

The machine operator underwent life-saving surgery 12 years ago to have most of his stomach and bowel removed after living with perforated diverticulitis and peritonitis. Ever since, he has had persistant issues with his stomach resulting in pain and stints in hospital.

After a week in the Royal Infirmary in July for colitis, he was given a follow-up appointment with his GP on August 20. Because he had returned to work in Mayfield, Kevin had to take two buses back to Bonnyrigg for the 11.45am appointment. He said: “My stomach and bowels were still not right and I needed to use the facilities in Dalkeith so I was a little late.”

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On arrival, the receptionist told him that the doctor wouldn’t see him. He said: “I was angry because I had taken a half-day off work and had been on two buses. The doctor was fully aware of my condition. I was very stressed.”

The following day he was suffering from severe stomach pains and had to book an emergency appointment at the same practice. He said: “I woke up with bad stomach pains and had to go to the doctor. It’s like a lottery in there trying to get an appointment.”

Kevin, who has to take daily medication to manage his condition, handed in the typed letter which stated he had ‘no faith in the NHS’ and received a reply days later. The letter read: ‘We feel that there has been a breakdown in relationship between you and the practice and the partners have come to a decision that you can no longer be a patient at our practice.’

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He was given seven days to register with a new surgery. He said: “Out this way surgeries are full to the brim. Most of them are closed to new patients. I was worried in case I had another flare up and needed to see someone.”

He has now been allocated a new GP but is scared that the results of the more than 20 biopsies carried out during his time in hospital “will be left in the long grass.”

He said: “I’ve been left in limbo. I shouldn’t be struck off for making a complaint.”

When approached, a spokeswoman for the Strathesk Medical Practice said they were unable to make any comment on individual patients.