"Impossible to get onto the appointments list"

I was recommended to the restorative surgery department for the Birmingham Dental Hospital by my dentist last year. I never heard back from them, so I contacted them after two months. Apparently the referral is sent to a "medical secretary" who then enters you into the appointment waiting list. The secretary at the time told me that the referral was incomplete and that x-rays were missing. My dentist promptly emailed the x-rays. Then I was told that the x-rays were present but the referral had gone missing, so my dentist sent the referral again. Now I was told the x-rays were missing again. This is an infinite loop and I am still trying to get on the patient waiting list an year later. I have made several calls. The secretaries have changed, the extension numbers changed, but the problem remains. My dentist has given up. I am appalled by the way my case has been handled. Utterly incompetent, I think this department is not fit for purpose. At no point have they contacted me or my dentist to state there is a problem with the referral. I have been chasing this up all at my end and expense. I keep being transferred between people, often to non-existing extension numbers, people out-to-lunch and automatic answering machines with full voice-mail boxes. Appalling.

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Responses

Response from Birmingham Dental Hospital

I am very sorry to read of your disappointing experience, and would very much like the opportunity to make sure your appointment is arranged. Please contact me, Alison Last, on 0121 466 7128 or email alison.last@bhamcommunity.nhs.uk to provide me with your details, and I will speak directly with colleagues at Birmingham Dental Hospital about your appointment. Please be aware that I will be out of the office until Monday 2nd February. I look forward to hearing from you. Yours sincerely Alison Last Associate Director of Patient Experience Birmingham Community Healthcare Trust

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