We in Ireland have a unique relationship with our GPs.
Many of us have gone to the same one since we were knee-high and trust them with our lives – literally.
Other folk regard the family doctor with suspicion or even derision; “sure all they do is hand out antibiotics to hypochondriacs,” you might think.
A new survey has shown that two out of three Irish people visit their GP at least once a year.
The average annual spend per person on going to the GP is €171, while a fifth of people spend more than €250 yearly.
The figures also show that there’s often an extra cost for parents who need to visit the GP.
Many mums and dads need to pay for childcare to go to the doctor themselves – the average cost of this is €50 per visit, rising to €75 for parents in Leinster.
Overall, we in Ireland spend over €353.7 million directly with GPs each year.
Over half of us say we Google our symptoms in a bid to avoid visiting the doctor, with more when admitting to doing this than men.
“These survey findings show that people can often find the traditional GP service inconvenient and expensive,” said Mary O’Brien, CEO at VideoDoc, which commissioned the survey.