"Waiting time in minor injuries-Monday 4 May 2015"

About: St Albans City Hospital

Whilst we are renowned for our patience in the UK it can sometimes be tested to the limit as it was for us on the morning of 4 May. After my wife had contacted 111 to discuss a painful shoulder we were provided with an 0950 appointment at Minor Injuries. On arrival at 0945 we saw a notice indicating an approximate 30 minute wait although we were advised it was more likely to be 45 minutes. At 1140 some two hours later we were still in the waiting room [the advice notice now suggested a one hour waiting time] During our wait my wife made enquiries at reception as, not only had we seen all the patients who had been in the waiting area on our arrival get seen but many who came in after us.We were told my wife would be next in -she was not! Whilst we would not wish to imply that the order in which patients were seen was not as it should have been-it does require an improvement in communication and i do not think it would be too difficult to introduce a system similar to that used in the Hospitals blood clinic where a number is allocated to each patient with a display monitor showing the current number being seen. We quite understand the team are dedicated and have no wish to keep anyone waiting longer than they have to but, hope you can take the blinkers off and make improvements in communicating to waiting patients when suggested waiting times are inaccurate and no effort is made to explain what the causes of extended waiting times are. Thank you.

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