"I attend a specialist neuro-urology ..."

About: University College Hospital

(as the patient),

What I liked

I attend a specialist neuro-urology clinic. The clinicians (many international recognised experts) and their team are highly skilled at resolving/managing complex bladder dysfunction and related issues. The standard of care is normally very high.

What could be improved

Although the building is new, facilities for disabled people including those with hearing impairments, older people or temporary mobility problems are poor.

Inside there are numerous heavy double doors to be negotiated on route to radiology or the wards and one to the outpatient podium. The latter is made up of pods. Most are a nightmare for those with mobility difficulties. Seating, is unsuitable, no room for wheelchair users or their companions to wait. The designated one wheelchair space causes an obstruction to those leaving or entering when there is anybody at the pod reception leading to be banged into frequently. Getting to most consultation rooms often means asking others to move their legs or wheelchairs – wheelchair users are very common in a pod that combines an orthopaedic clinic with one that caters for bladder disorders of those with neurological/spinal conditions.

PFI status apparently means no helpful information on display only advertisments. I did not think that knowing stock price shares useful to my clinic visit. At the old Middlesex, specialist nurse contact details, along with those of relevant patient organisations and useful leaflets on urological problems were on display.

The pharmacy is like a bank with staff behind screens. You either can’t hear what is being said, or you have to share it with the passing corridor full of people and those waiting to collect prescriptions but there are induction loops for those with hearing aids.

Anything else?

The hospital is very airport like. It has lounges including one for departure or discharge. Unfortunately like flights you also appear to be able to be bumped off without warning. The consultant at my last appointment carefully arranged that my radiology appointment was on the same day as my clinic appointment - I have a return journey of over 200miles at a cost of over £110. Last week I had my scan then went up clinic to find out that I was no longer on its list. I suspect the 18 week time limit for referral from GP to treatment for new patients, and that the hospital would be paid more for them, was responsible for follow up appointments being cancelled at the last minute. There were 5 doctors. The letter informing me of the cancellation arrived the following day. I was eventually seen but without my hospital notes.

Last year I was sent a pre-admission clinic appointment after I had been to theatre.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from University College Hospital

Thankyou for your comments.

If you would like feedback on your comments please contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service Opening times Monday to Friday 9am - 4pm (excluding public holidays) Tel No 020 7380 9975 (24hr answering machine)

Fax: 020 7691 5806

Email: pals@uclh.nhs.uk

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