No matter what the reason, the sudden unavailability of a doctor or nurse is at the very least upsetting for patients, and in some cases can have serious adverse consequences on patient care. Practice staff go frantic having to rearrange appointments or find alternative cover.
We all get ill
Cancellation at short notice is always a significant event, and it’s invariably a practice’s worst nightmare. Which is why it should never be undertaken lightly, and also why flexible salaried and locum GPs are so important to the running of the NHS.
With sick patients, and practice staff relying on us, even when there is a perfectly legitimate reason for cancellation such as illness, medical professionals genuinely hate having to take time off, and suffer incredible guilt in doing so.