"Rheumatology - no empathy and very rude"

About: East Surrey Hospital

Called today to chase a referral, and under the direction of my GP as we’ve waited over 6 weeks with no word already.

The number on the referral letter was East Grinstead hospital, despite my appointment being at another hospital.

I am discussed by the way I was treated.

I was advised that my file hasn’t been graded, therefore I have to wait a minimal 18 weeks before I can have an appointment.

I was also told that they have lots of people to arrange appointments for, who are not in any particular date order.

That I may get an appointment in either April or May.

That they cannot give me an appointment right now as their files are not in any date order.

Put aside the fact that they freely admitted their files are unorganised and in a huge mess. That no one seems to know who what why when and where.

The most shocking aspect of my call today was the sheer lack of empathy and rudeness.

Once I was advised that I would have to wait at least 18 weeks, before an appointment.

My go to response was – …“do they realise how much pain I am in. … “

The response over the phone was …”Sure you are”… as they laughed saying those three words.

I am gobsmacked that a health professional – even someone who books appointments can be so rude.

That wasn’t the first time they showed disrespect either.

I’m seriously contemplating further complaints – but will wait in the meantime for my GP to get back to me.

Utter shocking behaviour

My daughter was born in this hospital, no problems.

I had cancer related surgery in this hospital - extremely pleased. I opted to have my regular Oncology check ups at this hospital again pleased.

I've never been treated this way and from the other reviews throughout 2015, its evident that you've a serious issue with your Rheumatology department

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Response from Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust

Dear Anonymous,

I am very concerned to read your comments and need to investigate to find out what happened and what can be done to remedy the situation. In order for me to do this I will need more detail from you. Could you please email me: Alison.James@sash.nhs.uk and I will follow it up.

Kind regards,

Alison James

Associate Director, Medicine