"Call centre operator response."
About: Kings College Dental Hospital / Dental medicine specialities Kings College Dental Hospital Dental medicine specialities SE5 9RS NHS Direct NHS Trust / NHS 111 NHS Direct NHS Trust NHS 111 E1 8EU
Posted by Kiwi Dave (as ),
I called NHS 111 at 9am over the weekend to get some help with an acute dental problem. The call centre operator was informed and polite in assessing my condition and informing me of my options. The final option being to call back NHS 111 around 7.20pm that night so that the operator could call King's College Dental Institute to secure an appointment on my behalf. I did follow these instructions and called at 7. 20pm. Unfortunately the operator wasn't able to get through and told me to call back in 7 minutes. This I did. Unfortunately the operator I spoke to on this occasion insisted on re-doing the assessment which I had already given twice. This operator decided that I didn't qualify for having him make the call for an appointment and told me to see a dentist within 3 days. I was in great pain and discomfort and aware that I needed urgent attention. I told him in no uncertain terms how I felt about his attitude.
I immediately called again and spoke to a woman who noted my previous calls and assessments. She called and made an appointment on my behalf at King's for 8. 30pm I was very grateful and when I saw the dentist she acknowledged that I had an acute gum infection and prescribed antibiotics. I was most pleased, eventually, but disturbed at how an operator with no medical training and seemingly a bad attitude effectively tried to deny me access to NHS services. It was only my insistence and state of pain that ensured that I received the attention I needed. I hope that the managers of NHS 111 monitor the operators to make sure they serve the patients properly.