"The waiting time was excessively ..."

About: Hertford County Hospital

(as the patient),

What could be improved

The waiting time was excessively long and the waiting area was dirty. Parking was difficult and extremely expensive.

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Response from Hertford County Hospital

Thanks for your feedback, which we will ensure gets to the team at Hertford County. Sadly - and despite our best efforts - waiting times for some appointments can be longer than we would like. Indeed sometimes it can be for reasons outside of our direct control.

What anyone who is waiting deserves, however, is the reason for any delay - which if you're not given, you have a right to ask for. And if you're not satisfied with the response, then we encourage patients to make a formal complaint. This can be done through the Patient Advice Liaison Service or dealing direct with the Trust complaints team - it's all explained on our website.

We were surprised that you found Hertford County dirty as it is a new hospital that enjoys an enviable reputation for cleanliness. Anyone who is concerned that things are not as they should be should ask to speak to the nurse in charge and let them know about your concerns. A cleaner is never but a phone call away.

Finally you mentioned concerns about car parking at Hertford County. We face two challenging issues. The first is that the number of parking spaces that we are allowed to provide is set by the local authority under the original planning application made before the new hospital was built. Even if we had the funds to create more parking spaces and there was the land on which to put them, we aren't allowed to do so.

The second issue is that Hertford North train station is just up the road - hence all the parking restrictions on nearby roads. If we reduced our car parking charges for the public, this would merely result in commuters abusing the service and even less spaces being available to our patients.

While we do charge for parking, this is not a money-making initiative. Rather it ensures that we have sufficient funds to invest in car parking arrangements across our four hospital sites - for which we receive no dedicated funding. Annually we spend hundreds of thousands of pounds policing, maintaining and improving our public car parks. Any money left over is always ploughed back in to patient care.

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