"Disappointment, discomfort and anger."
About: Southend Hospital Southend Hospital Westcliff-on-Sea SS0 0RY
Posted by David Benton
What I liked
What could be improved
Air conditioning in the waiting area. The temperature must have been at least 30 degrees celsius in there even though it was zero outside. Communication with the patients. Informing them whose clinic they were attending. Being truthful about waiting times at all times. Softer seating.
My appointment at the Oral Surgery clinic was for 10.35 on the 16th Dec and I arrived on time. The waiting room was full. There was no indication on the white board that any clinic was running late. At 11.15, a nurse apologised and announced that her consultant's clinic was running 90 minutes late. How can a clinic that was apparantly on time at 10.30 be running 90 minutes late at 11.15? Those waiting had no idea whether this announcement applied to them but all but the orthodontic patients assumed it to be the case. At 11.30 the nurse re-entered the waiting area and announced that the clinic was now two hours behind and that, furthemore, the consultant had been called to A&E. She advised that those who couldn't wait should re-book at reception. The room soon emptied. I left with mixed feelings. Mainly disappointment but also anger. Why do clinics always run late? Why is the consultant never waiting for me despite the fact that notices on the wall suggest that many appointments are not kept? How awful would it be if we all attended? Why do I get the feeling that it is the patients who disrupt the smooth running of the hospital? Why do I feel guilty every time I attend the hospital in case I contribute to the late running? Why can't something be done to improve the experience of out-patients?