"waiting list for a waiting list"

About: Princess Alexandra Hospital (Harlow)

Our GP referred us for fertility treatment/investigations in December 2012. I think our initial appt was in March 2013. Partner is fine. I needed several blood tests, ultrasound and salpinogram. Ultrasound was May 2013 and salpinogram was July 2013. Bloods taken. We were next seen in September 2013, the doctor was really lovely and expained that there were concerns that I may have pco, but as I had no other symptoms it was unlikely. She advised that we "continue to be together every 2 to 3 days" and we would be seen in 6 months, if we weren't pregnant by then we would be referred for IVF. Now our problems began. By my calculations 6 months from September 2013 is February/March 2014, but the appt letter I received in February was for 27th June?! I phoned the appt department and the person I spoke to wasn't helpful and said "do you want the appt or not?". However, I accepted the appt for June 27th. The doctor this time had another person with him (trainee/junior?) he reviewed our situation, asked for bloods again (day 2 and day 21), and Hep B and C, HIV for both of us. He confirmed what the previous doctor had said about the pco. However, he said that I may need my other physical tests repeated as all tests had to be done within the 9 months prior to the referral for IVF (Note: had I been seen 6 months after my September appt, this would have been the case). But my latest test date was 11 months ago. He asked for bloods and said he would see us in 4-5 weeks and we would make a decision. The next appt letter came, for 8th August. I went to my doctors for bloods, and we discussed treatment. I mentioned the pco but she insists that I actually have a blocked tube not pco? Today, I have received a letter to say that my appt has been changed to 14th November. I feel this is unacceptable. I understand that it takes time to do tests, but our 3rd appt was 3months later then it should have been. And now our next appt has been changed and another appt made for 3 months later. By the time this new appt comes around it will have been nearly 2 years since our GP made the original referral.

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Response from Princess Alexandra Hospital

Dear Amy, Thank you so much for taking the time to leave your feedback. I can see that although you have had largely positive experiences with staff, the delays have really knocked your confidence and meant that you have may not have been referred in a timely way. In order to resolve this please do call the Women's Services Team through patient experience when you can. We will be ready and waiting to take your call. The Patient Experience Team is on 01279 82 70 84 or at pals@pah.nhs.uk, call us between Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm. We look forward to hearing from you.

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