"Ineffective appointments processes"

About: Lauriston Building

(as the patient),

I have a suspicious growth on my back and have been referred by my GP twice to have it checked out. I tried six times this afternoon to book my appointment however the telephone number provided on the letter has been busy each time. There is no answering service, email or alternative numbers. The letter says I have only have one week from the date of sending. This time window has been reduced by the weekend and a day in the post, effectively giving only 4 days. I have been referred by my GP for a second time as she is concerned about the growth, and if it is malignant time will be critical to ensuring a good outcome. The letter says this system is to give patients more choice about the date and time, but instead it seems to be an effective way to reduce waiting lists by denying patients to an appointment by having a continually engaged line, a limited time window to contact the line, and offering no alternative means of contact. To be clear, I will rearrange things to attend the soonest available appointment.

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Responses

Response from Jeannette Morrison, Head of Patient Experience, NHS Lothian

Dear AllyBallyBee,

I was so sorry to read of your difficulties trying to get in contact with the booking team. I appreciate how frustrating this must have been for you. We would be happy to try and help you and would be grateful if you can please contact the Patient Experience Team

Email: feedback@nhslothian.scot.nhs.uk

Telephone 0131 536 3370

Look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards

Jeannette

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