About: Raigmore Hospital Raigmore Hospital Inverness IV2 3UJ
Posted by Gooosed (as ),
Received a call from 01463 704000 after office hours and heard nothing but silence on the other end. I called back immediately and the operator asked if I had an appointment coming up. I replied that I knew I needed surgery but hadn't been advised of an appointment time. I was told "That's all it was, a reminder for your appointment. " I reiterated that I had not been advised of an appointment time and asked if they could tell me where I needed to be, when and if I needed to do anything to prepare. The operator appeared irritated by my inquiries and dismissed them without any explanation, the only response given was that I would have to wait until the following day and speak to the appointments team. The whole exchange left me feeling rather anxious. If it was a reminder, had my appointment letter got lost in the post? If it was a reminder, what if my appointment had been scheduled for the following day?
I have since discovered that the reason the woman could not give me any information is because the missed call isn't actually a person calling but an automated service. I now realise why she was unable to answer my questions, however had she explained this at the time and told me in a calm manner that she could not access my information, and given some indication of how far in advance of appointments these reminders were typically made, I would have felt a lot more at ease about matters.
Please remember that when someone calls, you are speaking to a human being. Some of whom (as in my case) are trying to come to terms with an unexpected and traumatic health issue which has the power to dictate their entire future. We are not faceless numbers at the other end of the line and we do not care for curt voices and dismissive actions coming from the place where we are expected to be entrusting our health to. A calm voice and a little explanation takes hardly any time at all but goes some way to making the experience more bearable.