"Poor location but really good staff at Guernsey House"

About: Guernsey House / Primary care addiction service Sheffield (PCASS)

(as the patient),

The worst thing about Guernsey House is its location. It is really incovenient to get to and it normally takes about 45 mins after my appointment time until I am seen by the doctor.

On the other hand, the doctors and staff are really good.

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Response from Dr Roger Smith

This is a reply to all the patients attending Guernsey House who have sent us their opinions of the service we are providing. We will be replying to specific individual responses but felt a general response was necessary to show that we are not ignoring the excellent feedback we have had so far.

There have been many good things said about the service as well as some specific areas that can be improved, but the overwhelming theme on the negative side has been the clinics running late, people having to wait beyond their appointment time to be seen and difficulty accessing the service when things go wrong. We have noted these complaints and are looking at ways of dealing with them. The solutions will be posted on the website for discussion.

Please keep the feedback coming and encourage other patients to participate this is a vital link in improving the service. Thank you to all of you that have responded

Dr Roger Smith

Clinical Director

Primary Care Addiction Service (PCASS)

Guernsey House

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Response from Patient Opinion

Thank you for this posting

We understand that for some of our service users our location is not convenient, you may wish to speak with one of our drug workers about alternative options that may be available to you or extra support you could get. You can do this by via recption at anytime.

We've received a number of postings which comment on waiting times so we wanted to reply in a way that let everyone know what we were doing to improve this. The postings such as yours have really made us realise exactly what the issues were for service users and how to move forward.

We try at Guernsey House to offer a service that is sympathetic to the challenges that face our service users and know that sometimes it is difficult to get to appointments on time and they can be missed. When this happens we still want to make time for these people as quickly as we can. This can have a knock on effect on the rest of the clinic and can increase waiting times but we feel it is important to keep people in treatment and hope that you understand why this is necessary.

In light of this, there may be very little scope for improving waiting times but what we think we could do better is communicate with you what is happening in the clinic at any one time. We're trying to make sure people know if the clinic is running late and by how much so that you know where you are and how long a wait to expect. At first we intend to do this through the reception staff so that you can plan around any delay and know we have not forgotten you are here. We are also planning to install digital signs in the waiting room so that at a glance you can see when you will be seen by a doctor. We have also put some information in the waiting room to explain what is happening after you have seen the doctor and are waiting for your prescription.

We hope you find this information useful, please post again and let us know what you think of the changes we have made. Thank you very much for bringing your concerns to our attention because it has allowed us to make changes that we think will benefit everyone.

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Update posted by Tapir839 (the patient)

Hi, i would like to give this reply as an example of the poor or inefficient admin. It has taken 9 months to get a reply. If this was a company people would be sacked or the business would go under. There is still a wait of aprox 45mins after your scheduled appointment that you get to see a doctor.

If it takes 9 months to get a response how long untill any action is taken?

Response from Michael McCrave

Many thanks for your response to the message/response that was published by our service last month.

Our response offered some explaination as some of the causative factors associated with both waiting times and how we as a service are attempting to deal with these issues,we hope you find this information useful.

I am also concious that in your original post you highlighted certain concerns regarding the geographical location of our service.

Although we are very mindful that the actual physical location of our service may present some of our service users with very specific inconvenience e.g. lengthy bus journeys to and from our service,the very nature /size of Sheffield means that were ever a specialist service is located it unfortunatley will often mean that a certain percentage of service users will have to travel 'a distance' to attend an appointment.

Our service endeavours to minimalise the inconvenience created by our actual location by only asking service users to attend appointments (at our location)that are necessary and relevant e.g. if things are going well regarding your treatment plans then it would be highly unusual for a doctor or worker to make you attend appointments on a weekly basis,it is much more likely that an individual would be asked to attend our service on a far less frequent basis,hence reducing the need for unnecessary travel to and from our location.

May I take this opportunity to thank you for the valid and relevant observations you have made regarding certain aspects of service delivery at Guernsey House.May I also take this opportunity to offer you the chance (if you should so wish) to speak to me directly (either by phone or face to face)to discuss some of the issues/ concerns you have raised.

Many Thanks

Mike McCrave

Team Leader (Nurse)

Guernsey House.

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