"If you have a back problem do not come to this..."

About: Stoke Mandeville Hospital

My Mother has been visiting the hospital now for over 3 years for a back problem which has seriously deteriorated. It may be that the problem cannot be cured but the pain and suffering that she is now experiencing should not have to be tolerated. My main complaint is the system for seeing the consultant. Once you have waited for the initial consultation you are told to wait for a call for an appointment. Why they cant give you an appointment then and there is beyond me. When you get the call and attend the hospital again for a procedure it could be some weeks or months after the initial consultation. So far probably not a lot different from most other hospitals, but now it gets ridiculous. After the procedure you are sent home and told you will be contacted in 6 weeks not by the surgeon but by the secretary. Its always longer than 6 weeks, but when you get the call and you say that the procedure hasnt worked, you are informed that they will get back to you with another appointment to see the consultant. You wait and wait without a call and when you phone them you are told that you have to be patient as they are 'very busy' . You fianlly get an appointment usually for about 12 weeks time and then the whole cycle starts again. This has happened about 4 times now over the past 3 years and all that has happened is that my Mother can now hardly walk but the hospital still does not act. We are not asking for preferential treatment but just to be seen more promptly now that some treatment has started. I have never heard of anything like this, I would of thought that once under a consultation if their prescribed treatment did not work they would personally take their responsibilities more seriously. While waiting for her back to be treated she has also had a replacement shoulder at the same hospital which took under 12 months from first appointment to completion, what a difference. I have also written and complained and the hospital havent even acknowledged the letter.

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Response from Stoke Mandeville Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to comment on your mother's experience. I am sorry to read about the problems she has been having and the length of time she has waited between contacts. I note that you have contacted our complaints department and apologise that you have not received an acknowledgment yet. I will share this feedback with them but you may wish to contact them or our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) via 01296 316042 to find out if they received your complaint. Kind regards Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

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