"Nightmare care of my baby!"

About: Royal Orthopaedic Hospital

My son was first diagnosed with scoliosis at the Alexandra hospital in Redditch. We were referred to The Royal Orthopaedic hospital the same day for further testing and scans and to see a spinal surgeon/consultant. At this time my son was only 6 months of age. In early march 2014 I rang the appointments team to see if there was any news on an appointment here I was told that my son was on the system but no appointment made yet. I rang back in the middle of April as it had been 14 weeks since referral almost exceeding the national waiting time of 18 weeks as I was due to go on holiday in a few weeks time and didn't want to miss his appointment after waiting so long. In April I was told my sons referral had been throw out dismissed. After spending several hours on the phone to different departments and my local hospital the Alex things were still left unresolved. Days later I was to be told somebody had dismissed his referral and tried to blame the consultant for it. I was often told i'd be called back and I wasn't. April 24th we were seen 16 weeks after initial referral my son was now nearly 11 months of age. Here I was told riley would need an mri scan under GA at Birmingham's Children's Hospital as part of his diagnosis treatment The Consultant told me that the referral would be sent the same day and would have an appointment shortly. 9 weeks it took for him to send the referral to BCH! A formal complaint was made with the PALS team, after weeks of phone calls and stress I finally had an MRI date. Riley was reviewed shortly after in august where we was told that he would be seen back in December for further x-rays and to see the consultant again. It is now the 11th November and I am currently chasing them again I have left a message of complaint with PALS but still waiting for them to ring back. The latest excuse for my son is ' oh he must have been missed' like he has been 3 times already. After PALS have dealt with my new complaint I am making a formal one with the local MP for Redditch and local health ombudsman. I am disgusted that I and my now 18 month old son would be treated in this way. I am appalled and disgusted that we pay into this NHS system and when it is needed by my son who has not only scoliosis but LLD pectus excavatum pelvic obliquity blood protein disorder and is also currently under 2 other consultants one at BCH and one at The Alex who by all accounts are amazing that we would be treated in such a disgusting way. To the ROH I am ashamed of you and you should be ashamed of yourselves on the spinal deformity ward. My son is not just a hospital number on your database he is a toddler at the start of his life with medical conditions let down by the people who are there to help him. So thanks for nothing except a mother and father left frustrated and angry by your so called patient care. I wonder how they would be if it was one of their children being mistreated like this? Kirsty Clews a mother left in utter shame.

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Response from Royal Orthopaedic Hospital

Dear Mrs Clews, Thank you for taking the time to explain in such detail your concerns around your son Riley's care and treatment at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. I am sorry that things that should have been straightforward have been anything but and that this has caused additional anxiety and upset at a time when you as a family clearly already have much to deal with. I am pleased that my colleague in PALS was able to assist you on more than one occasion but of course this does not address the root cause of the issue, and that we could have communicated much better to you. I regret very much that you have the impression we are not a caring organisation and don't have Riley's best interests at heart. I will liaise with my colleagues in the spinal service to see how we can ensure we show this at all stages of his care and treatment here and at every contact with us. with kind regards, Claire Williams, Patient Relations Manager

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