"Poor Care At Bolton Diabetes Clinic"

About: Royal Bolton Hospital

(as the patient),

I was referred to Bolton Diabetes Centre by my GP. When I first attended the clinic they offered in several appointments all in the same week, which was difficult to attend as I live a long way out by public transport. On one occasion they offered a telephone apt with nurse and then an appointment with a dietician 20 mins later at the clinic when I live an hour away. When I had to cancel as it was impossible to get there in time they refused to offer me another apt.

I have a lot of medical appointments and sometimes the appointments would clash with the ones they offered. When I asked to alter them to another date they threatened to discharge me. I contacted PALS who asked the clinic to take this into consideration when giving me appointments but nothing changed.

They prescribed me insulin but the request didn’t go through to my GP to prescribe it and I had to keep chasing it up. I was called in to clinic to be shown how to use it but they didn’t tell me it was a group of men and I was the only woman. I asked to be seen on my own and they put this down as I 'did not attend' the appointment.

I still hadn’t got the insulin prescribed and had to keep ringing the clinic. You don’t have a 'named nurse’, instead you have to leave a message and wait days for someone to contact you. They then put you through to a series of different people none of who knew about the insulin.

Eventually one of the nurses said they would have to email the consultant. (Even though he worked in the same building). She said she would ring back, but when she didn’t I rang again and was told he hadn’t replied to the email, just asking him face to face was apparently too much trouble. I got nowhere then another nurse told me I needed to ring the consultant’s secretary. I did and she said she would make an appointment for me to see the consultant.

She did but it clashed with another medical apt. They refused to change it and said it had been made especially for me to see the consultant when he was in clinic. I was advised by PALS it would be best to go and rearrange my other apt which was at different hospital miles away and I couldn’t do both. I re-arranged it and had to wait months for another appointment.

Things got even more confusing as I then got a text from Bolton Diabetes service saying to come to clinic at 12 noon whereas they had told me 1pm. I checked with PALS and the clinic itself who confirmed it was definitely 1pm and to ignore the text. I did so and was told off for being late when I arrived at the clinic at 1pm.

I was left waiting for 40 mins by the clinic and when I asked at reception they didn’t have a clue who I was supposed to be seeing. Eventually a nurse came out and said she didn’t know anything about me seeing the consultant which is what I had been told. She tried to prescribe me a different medication than insulin. It was one that hadn’t been discussed which she said caused nausea and I said I couldn’t take this I am having gastric problems investigated and a phobia of sickness and didn’t want to make things worse.

I rang the PALS office again who promised to speak to the consultant but it was too late he had already sent a letter to my GP to discharge me. I was very upset that he had explained nothing of what had gone on and just said I was impossible to work with and wondering what the staff had done to deserve such treatment, but not mentioned anything about what had gone on.

My GP asked them to see me again as he had offered in the letter but they refused. I was left without any treatment. This was after PALS assuring me the consultant was writing a ‘supportive’ letter to my GP. They also refused me access to the psychologist whom I wanted to see about coming to terms with the impact of having diabetes.

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