"Frustration with appointment booking service"

About: Devon Access and Referral Team (DART) Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital (Wonford) / Neurology

(as the patient),

Was referred by GP for nerve conduction studies (NCS). Contacted DART and was given an appointment at local neurology appointment. When appointment det.ails arrived I noticed it was a normal outpatient appointment. I contacted the hospital concerned and explained I needed NCS not a neurology consult. Was told to get back in touch with DART. Unable to do this as a) Unable to find a contact number b) no longer have a UBRN (Unique Booking Reference Number). V frustrated at this un-necessary waste of time, and annoyed that I'm having to do all this chasing about.

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Responses

Response from Susan Pearce, Project Support Manager, DART (Devon Access & Referral Team), NHS Devon

Dear ‘caro 1902’,

Thank you for contacting us with your feedback, it is very useful for us to know how patients feel about the service.

Regarding the appointment that you were given, this is the only way that local hospitals have chosen to give us access to the nerve conduction studies, and so this is the correct appointment for you to have. We cannot book you an appointment for the tests alone and nor can your GP which is why we booked it the way we did. The local hospitals know this is how we book patients in and are happy with it.

Regarding getting back in touch with us, our helpdesk number is 01626 883888 and we don’t need your UBRN, we can look you up using your name and date of birth if need be.

I hope this helps to answer your questions, please feel free to post another reply or contact me on the number above if you have further queries.

Kind regards,

Susan

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Update posted by caro 1902 (the patient)

Thank you Susan for your response. In it you say: "we cannot book you an appointment for the tests alone and nor can your GP which is why we booked it the way we did".

I checked with my GP who advised me that your information was innacurate and that she wanted me to have NCS before onward referring to either neurology or orthopaedics depending on the results of the NCS.

This morning I received an appointment for NCS. This is obviously contradictory to the information you supplied me, and that the neurology appointment was in fact premature.

I am confused but intend to attend for NCS on date given in letter.

Caroline

Response from Susan Pearce, Project Support Manager, DART (Devon Access & Referral Team), NHS Devon

Dear Caroline,

Thank you so much for posting back. I wonder if you wouldn't mind letting me know which hospital you are going to so that I can contact them? As you say, we obviously have out of date information so I'd like to call them and ask how we can access the NCS directly as this would benifit other patients as well? Currently we have been advised by all the hospitals to book for NCS only though Choose & Book and there are no services showing that offer the studies only, without the consultant appointment.

Thanks again.

Best wishes,

Susan

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