"Waiting times"

About: Livewell South West

(as a relative),

My partner regularly uses the local sexual health centre to receive contraceptives.

Before going in my partner always tries to make an appointment over the phone but finds it next to impossible to get through to anyone.

Having been in and seen the telephone ringing and being ignored by the receptionist this is hardly surprising.

When my partner does manage to get an appointment, my partner is always left waiting in reception usually for 30 minutes or more past the appointment time.

We wouldn't mind this as I know you are very busy, but it is every single time we visit so obviously the allocated time slots are not long enough or there is a deeper underlying problem.

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Response from Wendy Hill, Livewell South West

Dear Matt and Charlotte

We are very sorry that you have experienced a problem with the appointments line and that your appointment time has overrun.

We have one telephone line which is situated in our main office - not in reception and is not in public view. This line is very busy as the nature of our clinic means booking appointments can be a lengthy process. This of course does block the line which we understand can be frustrating to others calling in. We tend to have peak times when people are calling, and there are other times when the phone line is very quiet.

If there is no one at all in this office, for example when we are closed there is an answer machine and we return all messages the next working day.

The telephone on view in our reception area is an internal telephone manned by the clinic receptionist and she may at times be unable to answer the call as she is busy dealing with clients and preparing paper work for the clinic.

Due to the nature of our clinic, some patients often present with unexpected problems causing clinics to occasionally over run.

Our aim is to deliver the best care we can in a timely manner and would welcome the opportunity to discuss your individual concerns.

If you would like to speak with Angela Wake (Nurse Consultant) Angela can be contacted on 01752 434432. If Angela is unavailable at the time you call, please leave a message and she will return your call.

Kind Regards

Wendy Hill

Patient Experience Manager

Plymouth Community Healthcare

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