According to a recent press report some doctors’ lists are out of date and inaccurate. This is worrying in itself, as doctors do need to know who they are responsible for and to whom they should provide treatment. It is also worrying for taxpayers, if it means that the NHS is paying doctors for patients who do not exist, or who have died, or who are counted twice by being on more than one list.
I raised the general issue recently about the delays and errors taking on board the death of an individual once it is properly reported to the state’s very own Registrar. This is one more feature of the system. The Tell Us Once addition to Registration, or the act of registering itself, should trigger the automatic updating of the relevant GP’s list. Individuals registering a death are asked to take in the dead person’s NHS card, and the death is registered in full knowledge of their full name, address and National Insurance number. This should make updating the doctors records in an age of fast computers very easy.
When the Coalition looked at the topic of doctors lists in 2010 they estimated 2.8m patients registered in error.