"Chasing up appointments yet again!"
About: Lister Hospital Lister Hospital Stevenage SG1 4AB
Posted by John Johnstone
The appointment system, or rather the lack of, is absolutely disgraceful. I attended the outpatient clinic on 13.10.14 and was told that I needed physiotherapy and a further appointment for 3-4 months time. I contacted the appointments team today, over 6 weeks later, to inform them that I still hadn't received an appointment and was told that "those clinics had been closed/put on hold until further notice". I wasn't offered a reason as to why this was so, I was merely told that I was "on the list" and would be sent an appointment when the clinic re-opened, "whenever that would be". Why are the clinics closed? Why wasn't I sent a holding reply explaining the situation? I also contacted the physiotherapy department and was told that they hoped to be able to send me an appointment in another 6 weeks time. Assuming they do and allowing for perhaps a week or so between issue of the appointment letter and the appointment itself by my calculation I may, if lucky, attend my first physiotherapy session around 23.01.15. i.e. over 3 months after they received the original request/instruction from the consultant (which they confirmed was 14.10.14). Please explain to me how the orthopaedic and physiotherapy departments interact/liaise with each other i.e. if the clinic had provided me with an appointment as requested by the consultant it's quite possible that I would not have received physiotherapy as prescribed before my appointment with the consultant. Thereby wasting everybody's time! If you examine my records you will see that this is not the first time that I've had to endure Lister hospital' incredible incompetence. Indeed there have been several instances where I have had to chase up for appointments due to administrative errors. There was also an occasion when I declined a physiotherapy appointment sent to me some 4+ months after I was referred due to the fact that I paid for private treatment, as I couldn't continue to wait. The medical staff at the Lister are first class but the systems/processes in place to support them and to deliver services to patients are appalling and not fit for purpose.