“It’s a kind of medical consumerism”denounces the president of the French Union for Free Medicine, the general practitioner jerome Marty, Friday September 23 on franceinfo, while 28 million medical appointments are not honored by patients in France every year, according to a extended study of the Regional Union of Health Professions of Ile-de-France. The UFML denounces meetings “stolen” to patients who need it and proposes a financial sanction which would be used to help fight against medical deserts.
franceinfo : How do you explain that so many medical appointments are not honored by patients?
jerome Martin : We are talking about acts of incivility by people who make an appointment with a doctor and who fail to notify him when they do not come. It’s a kind of medical consumerism. We consider health as a commercial good, like any other good that we would buy. When you want to go buy jeans, you don’t tell the store if you don’t go there. It’s kind of the type of behavior that we deplore.
Which patients have this type of behavior?
It is not something that is frequently encountered in patients who have the CMU Or other. They are active patients, young with children, who will come for fairly innocuous things and who postpone their appointments without warning. We see less of this phenomenon in rurality. On the one hand, in rurality, the patients are often older and then you have a strong doctor-treating tie, family doctor, which you have less of in town. All this is facilitated by the platforms typical meeting Doctolib Or other. We make a first appointment 15 days or three weeks before with a doctor who is far from home, in the meantime an appointment becomes available closer, we take it but we don’t delete the first one. We can leave like that one, two or three appointments occupied in an artificial way which are neither more nor less stolen from patients who would need it.
The platforms are they considering solutions?
We discussed it with them. They are thinking of ways to reduce this thing but it is not done yet. What the platforms appointment, it’s blacklist the patients. A patient who has not come once, twice, three times, we blacklist. But that doesn’t go with medical practice.
“We do not have to judge the civility or the incivility of a patient. We treat virtuous patients as well as non-virtuous ones, it is our role as doctors.”
jerome Marty, president of the UFML
What do you think is the solution?
In view of the figure which is extremely important, the government must take its responsibilities. He must really implement the means to stop this because if we solve this, we solve a good part of the difficulties of access to care for the French. We are telling the government to perhaps think about hitting where it hurts, hitting the wallet, in a very symbolic way. We are not saying that we must take the value of the consultation that has not been carried out, but take part of it, this money being earmarked and going to a fund to solve medical deserts or difficulties in accessing care. . To do this, we must change the Public Health Code because we do not have the right to charge for an act that is not carried out, so we must change that. Then, it is certainly up to Health Insurance to recover the undue amount at the time of the next consultation.