New research has found it takes a York patient an average of 10.8 days to see their GP.
Researchers analysed NHS Digital data on waiting times alongside a national survey of UK adults who have tried to see their GP in the last six months.
That is a lot longer than the UK average delay of seven days.
It found that 22% of those living in York had to contact their medical practice several times before they could book an appointment, as there weren’t any bookable slots left or they couldn’t get through to reception staff.
On average, it took them 3.5 days to get booked in, and then there was an average additional wait of 7.3 days before the appointment took place.
The study by medical negligence experts Boyes Turner Claims reveals that 12% of patients were seen on the same day.
But more than that – 14% – waited more than a month in total (14%). And nearly a quarter of patients (24%) said they’re still waiting to get an appointment.
These delays have seen patients look to other means to see a medical professional, or even try and deal with their ailments themselves, researchers found.
In York, 21% had called 111, 3% had called 999, 24% had self-medicated and 14% had ignored the problem altogether.
Thousands wait a month
The research comes after York’s Lib Dem councillors found that thousands of York residents were waiting weeks for a GP appointment.
Data from the House of Commons Library, revealed that 59.6% of patients in York are receiving in-person GP appointments, with nearly 13,000 residents having had to wait more than 28 days for their appointment.
NHS Vale of York CCG has previously said that a surge in demand is affecting GP practices, primary and community healthcare and urged residents to use online services, submit requests for prescriptions in plenty of time and consider self-care for illnesses such as colds and stomach upset.
Councillor Carol Runciman, Liberal Democrat executive member for health and adult social care, said: “Firstly, I would like to thank those working within our NHS system under huge pressure at the moment whilst continuing to maintain high standards of care for patients.
“GPs have truly gone above and beyond throughout this pandemic, working tirelessly to make sure everyone could contact their GP even when face-to-face appointments couldn’t go ahead.
“Despite their incredible determination and work, both surgeries and residents are now being let down by a Government that is failing to grapple with the problem of rising waiting times and a backlog of people waiting for treatment.”