"Service changeover could be handled better"
About: Adult community services / Continence advisory service Adult community services Continence advisory service Rotherham S60 1RY
Posted by Frankly1972 (as ),
My stepdaughter is 20, has severe learning difficulties and is incontinent. I have previously fed back on changes to the continence service which were positive and helpful for us. For the last year or so, the continence products delivery service has been managed by Ontex. The process was very simple. When we needed product, we called up, selected the number for the area we live in and then we were immediately put through to someone who gave us a delivery date. All in all, it was a very prompt, efficient and customer friendly service.
We were recently informed by letter that the service provider would change from next week. The letter advised us that current deliveries would remain the same and that we would be contacted about the new delivery process in due course. So far so good. I called Ontex today to arrange a delivery to be told that because of the next week's handover to the new provider Tena they were no longer taking any further deliveries. They gave me Tena's number so I could call them and they believed that my stepdaughter's usual delivery information (including size, quantity, delivery address etc) would have been transferred over to Tena's system.
I then called Tena only to find that to proceed with our order I need a unique patient ID. Not to worry, I thought, I can speak to someone and explain the situation and place the order. What I discovered is that placing orders involves using an automated phone ordering system which requires the unique patient ID that we have not yet been advised of. The only option that actually promises you can speak to a human being is the one that looks after current orders. When I selected that option, I was informed they were busy, there was no one to take my call and there was not even an option to leave a voice mail.
I will keep an open mind but so far the Tena customer experience feels a lot more detached and a lot less customer friendly than the Ontex one. I work with the NHS every day and I understand fully the huge pressures there are on services to reduce cost. Obviously I understand automating the process online is likely to help reduce cost. However when retendering for the delivery service, you would have thought there would have been some consultation with service users to find out what works best for them. The first we knew of it was the fait accompli letter telling us about the service change. Surely a truly patient centred service starts with the patients and what they want and need?