"Unclear / Unavailable access & advice for Walk In..."

About: Ashford Hospital

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Unable to sleep due an intense, dull, chronic pain I slowly drove to Ashford Hospital at 6am to seek some form of remedial treatment. Whilst outside the main entrance showing obvious pain I asked two members of staff where the walk in centre was located as the main entrance did not indicate this. "Somewhere over there" was the response. Whilst having to walk around the location in intense discomfort did not help, due to remodelling there was confusing ambiguity in regard to where the 'walk in' entrance should be. Eventually this was located, whereupon it was then identified that the opening hours were at 8am. Is this truly what we pay taxpayers money for? I understand that the footprint / layout and directions in most Hospitals are confusing at the best of times, but when there is genuine need and an individuals senses are likely dulled due to pain, it would be excellent to have a clear, concise and helpful mechanism to be able to gain assistance and relief, which should be the ultimate goal of the health service itself. A sign of the times maybe - It seems that society's current and growing trend towards the "serve yourself" self service mechanism has it's obvious floors. I wonder how the elderly cope with this? A very disgruntled and still in pain National Insurance paying local resident.

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Response from Ashford Hospital

Dear Pierre, The walk-in centre is actually operated by Greenbrook Healthcare and not Ashford Hospital. As a walk-in centre (rather than an Accident and Emergency Department) it is not open all of the time and in case it is useful to know for the future the opening times are advertised on the Greenbrook website - http://www.greenbrook.nhs.uk/Ashford_health_centre. We have passed your comments on to Greenbrook Healthcare and if you would like to discuss your concerns about opening times further please contact Business Manager Cathy Makepeace on 01784 884 000. With regards to your comments about signage, the centre is located on the Ashford Hospital site, so we would hope that all staff on site would be able to provide good directions and apologise if this was not the case. The remodelling you refer to is most likely the work taking place in our new outpatients department, so we will liaise with Greenbrooks to see if there is anything we can do to help make the signage clearer. Many thanks for your comments.

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