"Ambulatory Care Unit"

About: North Middlesex Hospital

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I was transferred to further investigation and treatment to the Ambulatory Care Unit at the North Middlesex Hospital on Monday 9 December 2013, from A & E Department at the North Middlesex Hospital. I was placed in the waiting room for 2 hours before a porter came for me and announced that was to be taken for an scan. I had the scan, and then was transported back to the waiting room in Ambulatory Care Unit. Again, no one came and explained what will be happening. By this time, I had been at the North Middlesex Hospital for 6 hours, with only appropriate communication from A & E and no communication with medical staff in the Ambulatory Care Unit about what is the progress of my treatment. My enquires to staff walking around about what is happening, were met with rudeness and the response is that 'you will be seen by the doctor". These calls were done whilst sitting in the waiting room, the reception desk is opposite. My mobility was difficult as I had a foot surgery a week ago, and rely heavily on crutches and this leg is throbbing and cause distress, very uncomfortable. Telephone call the North Middlesex Hospital Complaints department, who advised to ask to speak to the senior ward staff, whilst he was on the phone with me, heard me ask, and the receptionist went looking for staff and could not find none. I explained that I was getting very distress and being treated so uncaring by staff some of the staff in the ambulatory care unit. I was eventually seen by the Doctor ,who explained the ward was being moved today and the staff were very busy. She subsequently made a follow-up appointment for me for 11.12.2013 in the morning, the same day as my out-patient appointment in the afternoon to attend to my foot surgery. Unfortunately, although I appreciate how busy the ambulatory care unit was, that is no excuse for the behaviour and uncaring treatment I received from some of the staff. Just to be left sitting around, waiting to be told what form of treatment I will be getting, if any for a serious condition. I am a very high risk patient, who has followed medical advise, following surgery to report any symptoms of DVT immediately to medical staff. Not only does this heighten anxiety, causing confusion and distrust as to whether I am receiving the appropriate medical treatment. To add further insult today 11.12.2013, noticed that my appointment was mistakenly made for 10.12.2013 in the Ambulatory Care Unit, obviously by mistake by the Doctor. I honestly, believe it was a mistake by the Doctor, as we had discussed the need to have appointment to appointments on 'one day'. Realising this I contacted the Ambulatory Care Unit and again met with staff who where not initially unhelpful; I suggest that they need further training about how to talk to patients, they were very rude and un-sympathetic.

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Response from North Middlesex Hospital

Thanks for your feedback. I'm sorry you weren't sure how long you would have to wait in ambulatory care and felt we didn't communicate to you enough. We want to make all our patients feel looked after and I'm sorry we didn't manage that on this day when we were moving. I'd be happy to have a chat about it if you'd like to email me your contact details. And I will share your thoughts with the team so we do better next time. Many thanks. Sheila O'Dwyer , Manager of the ambulatory care unit: sheila.O'dwyer@nhs.net with further feedback.

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