News

NHS Myths

(February 03, 2012)

During last week's Westminster Hall debate<http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201212/cmhansrd/cm120124/halltext/120124h0002.htm> on the subject of the use of 084 phone numbers by GP's, Health Minister Simon Burns stated that any phone service ‘should not cost patients any more than a local landline call’. He also clarified the confusion about whether mobile phones were subject to the 2009 Direction issued by the Department of Health.

However the Minister said he had been unable to find any evidence of GPs using these phone numbers. Which? has evidence to show that in most circumstances it costs more to call an 084 number than a geographic (01 or 02) or 03 number. We will be sending the Minister statistical evidence of call costs from and would also like to include copies of phone bills consumers have sent us. If your constituents have had been in touch about this issue we would like to include their phone bills in our evidence.

We have recently posted a Which? Conversation<http://conversation.which.co.uk/money/expensive-gp-phone-numbers-nhs-premium-0844-number/)> asking for evidence, and would be grateful if you could promote this to your constituents via your website, Twitter or Facebook: if you wish you can re-tweet our Twitter<https://twitter.com/> post on this.

We hope that by showing the Minister solid examples of this being a problem he will ensure the new guidance will be stronger, clearer and leave GPs in no doubt where they stand.

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