"Gynaecology outpatients - a consultant..."
About: St James's University Hospital St James's University Hospital Leeds LS9 7TF
I have been treated as a gynaecology outpatient for endometriosis at St James for over 2 years. There is a clearly a communication problem between staff and not enough time given to staff to read patient notes prior to clinical reviews. On several occasions consultants or trainee consultants have swept into the room with such pronouncements as 'so we'll sign you off now your polyps are sorted' - err no, that's a tangental problem discovered while trying to fix my endometriosis which has not been treated; or 'so I understand you've had a hysterectomy' - err no, I've had a hysteroscopy. They are very different and require different treatment afterwards; 'well we can always do ablation' - err no we can't due to some physical constraints, as fully discussed and presumably added into my notes at the last session with a different doctor. Staff don't seem to have a care summary nor do they log onto system 1 or EMIS to check records. I am constantly asked to remember drug dosages etc which are then duplicated with no checking against records and on one occasion was asked to sign off the records for a prostap injection because the consultant had left without doing so and mine was the last appointment. I have seen more than 8 different members of staff in 2013, all allegedly working for my consultant, who I have only ever seen twice in person in 2 years (second time after a complaint). I am constantly being recommended treatment which I have previously had and reacted badly to, or which has already been ruled out as inappropriate. I understand that chronic conditions are always difficult for the NHS to deal with however the main aim of St James staff seems to be to try and sign a patient off regardless of whether their condition and treatment regime is actually stable. Treatment plans consist of a random stab in the dark approach, varying (apparantly) at the whim of whoever you see that week/month. Conversely the much put upon nursing staff could not be more pleasant, and on several occasions have apologised to me for the rude and overbearing conduct of their medical colleagues. There is very little help given with pain control which has left me having to have addiitonal visits with GPs. I am not certain whether the constant staff turnover at St James is due to it being a teaching hospital or symptomatic of other problems meaning that they are unable to retain experienced staff however my previous consultant at Bradford PCT was a regular face throughout my treatment and had a good overview of my case so this is not standard for the NHS. At St James at least one appointment went unrecorded because the consultant made no notes of my treatment at all. I would not recommend this department to anyone with a chronic condition, and am considering asking for a transfer to a different hospital. Any actual treatments have been done well but they have no idea of consistent care and the whole experience is extremely stressful during an already difficult period of illne