GPs in the IMO are urging patients with non Covid-19 health issues to contact their GPs for a consultation or assessment now in order to avoid longer term health complications.
Dr Madeleine Ní Dhálaigh, a GP in Roscommon and a member of the IMO GP Committee, said that the decline in “routine” appointments by patients over recent weeks was a source of concern not comfort for GPs.
“People haven’t simply got healthier,” she said.
“The reality is that many are simply ignoring warning signs and risking larger health problems down the line because Covid-19 has become our only focus of discussion or debate.
She said: “Patients have been extraordinarily supportive of GPs and many have delayed contacting them about their own issues for fear of adding to pressures on the GP service at this time. But we are now appealing to people to make contact with us. You can talk to your GP over the phone who can then assess your situation and advise you on next steps.”
Dr Ní Dhálaigh said that the establishment of Community Assessment Hubs for Covid-19 cases would free up GPs to deal with more non-Covid 19 cases and would enable GPs to see patients in their surgeries for a personal consultation if that was required.