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Thread: Medical cert. french race

  1. #21
    Master Alexandra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike T View Post
    Sorry for misunderstanding your post! All the best with the race - and a Happy Xmas!
    Thanks, Mike, no problem. Actually, my recent racing in France project is now dead in the water, but it's still good to have sorted out the possibilities for an unknown future. Best wishes for your training and racing in 2017.
    Begin afresh, afresh, afresh.

  2. #22
    Master Tussockface's Avatar
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    I know we've covered this topic before, but I contacted my GP Practice today to get a signature on a fitness to race form and was told that it would cost me 63. This is to take part in one low-key French event which is only €20 to enter.
    63 seems a ridiculous amount, especially as the doctor isn't even saying I need a medical, just a 5 minute appointment with a nurse.
    I'm sure I save the medical practice vast sums by staying fit and never having to take up their time or resources. I'm now not sure what to do. I might try to argue the UKA case with the organisers - that UKA state that their competition licence is normally valid abroad in lieu of a medical note. I am however all too aware that this goes against my own advice earlier on this thread. If I can't persuade the race organiser in advance to accept my UKA card, I'll need a plan B - which might involve changing my GP to one who is prepared to support healthy lifestyle choices.
    Are fees on the scale now the norm, or is my GP being particularly mercenary?
    "Get yourself together, Jones" - Ray Davies

  3. #23
    Senior Member bigfella's Avatar
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    I needed a GP referral letter to a physio on my health insurance which I fully expected to pay for but there was no charge It seems rather random for a supposedly National Health Service. Perhaps it will be better if GP's are directly employed which seems to be one idea currently doing the rounds.
    Cause tramps like us, baby we were born to run

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tussockface View Post
    I know we've covered this topic before, but I contacted my GP Practice today to get a signature on a fitness to race form and was told that it would cost me 63. This is to take part in one low-key French event which is only 20 to enter.
    63 seems a ridiculous amount, especially as the doctor isn't even saying I need a medical, just a 5 minute appointment with a nurse.
    I'm sure I save the medical practice vast sums by staying fit and never having to take up their time or resources. I'm now not sure what to do. I might try to argue the UKA case with the organisers - that UKA state that their competition licence is normally valid abroad in lieu of a medical note. I am however all too aware that this goes against my own advice earlier on this thread. If I can't persuade the race organiser in advance to accept my UKA card, I'll need a plan B - which might involve changing my GP to one who is prepared to support healthy lifestyle choices.
    Are fees on the scale now the norm, or is my GP being particularly mercenary?
    You are not alone, last year I spent roughly the same. Wouldn't have minded if the doc actually did something beyond take my blood pressure and be impressed by my heart rate. Total con!

  5. #25
    Master Tussockface's Avatar
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    Yes: for my 63 I don't even get to see the doctor at all!

    I've got my French son-in law on the job of contacting the RO to see if he'll accept my UKA licence. I fear the worst, especially as the organiser is (genuinely) called Monsieur Grognon - Mr Grumpy!
    "Get yourself together, Jones" - Ray Davies

  6. #26
    Senior Member drmorris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigfella View Post
    I needed a GP referral letter to a physio on my health insurance which I fully expected to pay for but there was no charge It seems rather random for a supposedly National Health Service. Perhaps it will be better if GP's are directly employed which seems to be one idea currently doing the rounds.
    GPs are not allowed to charge a fee for referring, NHS or private.
    Nor are they allowed to accept kickbacks from the provider.

    Be careful what you wish for re: a salaried service. Most of us GPs work way beyond our contracted hours and responsibilities. This is not likely to be the case in a salaried service, it's just human nature.


    FWIW I sign these forms without charge BUT I do insist on a chat with people to explain that they are useless, have no protective value over their health and they have no form of redress to me if they fall over competing.
    I don't charge, because they are worthless, and to do so would be indecent.
    I don't examine people, because(and it sounds counterintuitive) there's nothing you can find with hands and eyes and stethoscope in an athlete in training that might be a problem several weeks or months hence. Most non-invasive testing is useless as well(ECG, echo, lung function etc)

    Without the form, you can't race, so I check that people know what they are letting themselves in for, have done some sort of sensible training, and know the stories(sadly, there are always recent stories) of competitors in local or national events who have had issues, some of them lethal.

    Then I wish them good luck.

    And half the time wish I was in their event too.
    Best Wishes

    David
    Cheshire Hash House Harriers http://www.cheshirehash.co.uk/cheshire/

  7. #27
    Senior Member drmorris's Avatar
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    A GPs Tips for getting form signed if you are having problems:

    Print out the Race RO form, or mock up one from internet. Examples abound.

    Get a phone appt with your GP(don't tell reception it's about a 'medical') explain the situation, and that you know it's nonsense, but ask politely and apologise for taking up NHS time with your personal obsession.
    However DON'T MINIMISE IT. My signature is not 'just' a signature; it took 10 years training to get to the point where my signature has some perceived value, or at least by Euro ROs.
    I've spent another 21 years since thinking twice and checking twice every time I sign any report, letter or... prescription - dozens of times every working day. During that time I've got to know you and your family, and I've maintained and updated a record of you that is lifelong and almost always 100% complete and accurate. I have an ongoing commitment to you and yours about ANY health matter you want to walk in and talk about.
    And I worry that I'm the one your wife will come looking for when you die of heat exhaustion in the Marathon de Medoc and blame me, rather than your ill advised wine-based hydration regime. My medical defence insurance fees are around 9,000 a year.
    (this is part of the justification for charging people for the time their personal obsessions take)

    Like it or not, my 'status' is what is being asked to validate your entry; don't inadvertently say "can you just...?"

    Explain that it is a medical release/ permission form that needs signing, and NOT 'a medical'.

    Explain that you are adequately trained and experienced; it's only the Eurocrats that need it(UK races are all self-declaration) and you know what you are letting yourself in for.
    Explain that you've done loads of UK races and never needed a form, it's just the Eurocrats.
    Make it easy for the GP, make it clear the responsibility is yours.
    Apologise again.
    ('medical' tends to be interpreted by receptionists as something needing and examination and time; most GPs charge +/- 180 per hour for non-NHS (i.e Private) work, so around 15-25 per 10 minutes)

    It only needs a signature +/- stamp.

    Possibly offer to donate to the charity of your GP's choice/ Mountain Rescue/ Lifeboats/ Medecin sans Frontier

    Ask if you can leave it at reception, and collect it yourself (or enclose SAE) - make it easy.
    You don't really need a face-to-face appt, but some may insist.

    Seeing a nurse is pointless(I like nurses, I married one, but they can't help you here)


    This would take 10 minutes of my working week, with some involvement of my receptionists, admin and switchboard, but if it's like any normal week, it's 10 minutes squeezing something else out.



    Some surgeries just have a hard line and charge for all non-NHS contracted work.

    The approach outlined above maximises your chances in my opinion.



    It would be wrong of me to advocate printing the form, signing with an illegible squiggle yourself and winging it.

    But this also happens

    David, full time NHS GP
    Best Wishes

    David
    Cheshire Hash House Harriers http://www.cheshirehash.co.uk/cheshire/

  8. #28
    Master Tussockface's Avatar
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    Thanks for that detailed advice, David.

    It's actually pretty close to what I did - even down to supplying a form, pre-filled, and a stamped addressed envelope. I was conscious of not wanting to be a burden on valuable GP/NHS time simply to satisfy French bureaucracy. Even though it was acknowledged that no actual medical examination was involved, and the doctor would not see me personally, this made no difference and I was simply told, with no justification or reasoning behind the fee, that it was 63 or no signature. I'd be interested to know how that sum was arrived at.

    I find this GP's attitude particularly annoying because, as a school leader, I've spent decades happily giving up my own time to fill in passport forms for families. I do this simply because it helps people, and to me is part and parcel of having professional standing within a community. There has never been any thought of charging a fee, though occasionally when families have offered payment I've thanked them and suggested they make a donation to a charity of their own choice.

    I can only say that I wish you were my GP!
    "Get yourself together, Jones" - Ray Davies

  9. #29
    Master
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    If the form says something like "I have examined ..." then I feel - to be fair to both the doctor concerned and you, then you need to have been examined - though not necessarily on the date the form is stamped and signed, of course.

  10. #30
    Master Tussockface's Avatar
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    Perhaps my way forward then is to demand immediate, intensive, invasive and intimate examination. For 63 I should expect no less.
    On drmorris's scale of fees, I anticipate a minimum of 20 minutes' worth of fun.
    "Get yourself together, Jones" - Ray Davies

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