"Hello anyone there??"

About: Colchester General Hospital

I rang the hospital to try and locate my Father that had been taken in as an emergency, I rang and spoke to reception, she located him on EAU and put me through. The phone rang and rang and no one answered, it looped back to reception. She apologised and said she would try again. It rang and rang again and then someone picked up. She answered the phone in a very impolite manner, like I was disturbing her. I explained I was trying to locate my dad and gave his name. No we have no one of that name on here. I explained that someone had informed me he was there. She signed and said try this number 01206 742639 and ask them, and then swiftly slammed down the phone. I rang the number she had given me, and it rang and rang. Eventually after about 15 minutes I gave up. I rang back to the reception and explained what had happened. She apologised and she I wish they would not give that number as it never picked up. She said she would try another number and to wait on the line. She came back after 10 minutes and apologised. She said I am so sorry, she said I am going to ring a mobile instead, as this is not right. She got straight through and I managed to speak to my Dad. We live in Preston and we were quite concerned that the whole process of being put through took about 40 minutes. I would like to mention the receptionist who I swiftly rang back after speaking to Dad to take her name and thank her. They are the hardest working reception I have met in a long time and I want to congratulate her on a excellent job. She stayed calm when I almost became hysterical when I could not find my Father. I hate to say the staff on the wards could do with some telephone skills training. I do know they are busy and stretched but sometimes taking a few minute's to answer a concerned relatives questions, is all it needs.

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Response from Colchester General Hospital

I apologise you’ve not had a good patient experience. We try really hard to improve our services based on the comments we receive from our patients, their relatives or carers. We would like the opportunity to discuss your experiences more fully and to apologise in person. If you are willing I would appreciate it if I could ask the matron to contact you. Could you email me, using the reference “Comment on General Medicine at RDEE4-Colchester General Hospital at 07/06/2014 08:44:14”, please? Many thanks Paul Searle, Head of Communications Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust info@colchesterhospital.nhs.uk

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