I’m sorry to hear about your experience Lancashire Lass. Mine has been completely different. I had my first face to face diagnosis of incurable Stage 4 sbc in March 2020, right before lockdown, at the Christie. After that it was monthly blood tests and 3 monthly CT scans in a very safe and almost empty Christie followed by thorough telephone consultations, with time to talk and ask questions, plus e mail and telephone contact with the consultants secretary and thé MacMillan staff when I was concerned about anything. After a bad reaction to a bone strengthening infusion thé consultant saw me face to face once. And I was invited to an Christie annual sbc presentation, on line for the first time in 2020, where 6 hours of presentations were made by the consultant, MacMillan, dieticians, Maggie’s, and 6 women with sbc - and questions could be submitted and were answered. So much information and an amazing effort from them, really helped me and my husband. I am lucky in both my GP and dentist, they are both wonderful. My GP responds quickly to any Ask My GP requests, and has seen me face to face once for a recurrent earache. I always make sure that they are thé practioner I see or contact when I need to. I have also, in the past and during the pandemic, let them, their practices, and the Christie know how grateful I am for the NHS, the training they have done and the service the particular practioner gives. I do know I am extremely fortunate, but I have also used what controls I have in my choices to make it the best for me. I know that’s not possible for everyone, My only difficulty was being unable to see the dentist for about 6 months before I could have a bone strengthening injection. It hasn’t been good not seeing practioners face to face but we should remember that they have also been at risk of covid, they have worked in hospitals during the pandemic, they have opened their surgeries for covid jabs, mine is doing weekend blood tests to help the local NHS hospital, they have had increased workloads due to covid, and there is a huge shortage on NHS staff across the board. I am almost 2 years on, stable mets, cancers shrunk significantly, still incurable but very grateful. If you can do anything to change your experience to a more positive one please try it. One of the best pieces of advice on a forum was to take control of what you can, and that has served me well.
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