"Lovely friendly staff, but long wait..."

About: University Hospital Of North Tees

What I liked

The staff (receptionist, nurse and consultant) were very friendly and informative and answered any questions I had. They did their job very well despite the obvious backlog of patients waiting to be seen. The consultant was very patient-friendly and very efficient.

What could be improved

Waiting times - I waited 20 minutes to have my blood pressure and weight checked by the nurse and then a further 40 minutes before I was called to see the consultant despite my appointment letter advising me to allow sufficient time to park to ensure I was prompt for my appointment! I was told that this was due to a shortage of rooms in the Womens outpatient department but I was not advised of the wait times when I arrived for my appointment until I asked. I spent less than 5 minutes with the nurse and less than 5 minutes with the consultant - and to add to this I then found that I had to pay £3 parking (which is the minimum charge for parking upto 2 hours) - absolutely extortionate! Luckily I do not need to be under the consultant for the rest of my pregnancy and so will not have to pay these charges.

Anything else?

The service I received was excellent and the staff did their job as best as they could despite the shortages of resources etc.

I have also heard that the maternity wards are extremely short-staffed but due to budget cuts in the NHS, they are unable to take on any more midwives. I had a bad experience at North Tees having my last child in the fact that there was 2 midwives running the labour ward and so I was left with my birthing partner without much other support for the majority of my labour. At one point advising me I should go home, which thankfully I refused and I had my child just 2 hours later. I am hoping, many years down the line, that this experience will be much better, but I do not hold out much hope.Opening hoursProfessionalismServiceMaternityConsultantsNursing staffReception staffAppointmentsWaiting timesHypertensionAccommodationCar ParkOutpatientsBlood pressure check

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Responses

Response from University Hospital Of North Tees

Thank you for your very positive comments about staff in the clinic. We will pass these on to the staff concerned. We’re sorry you had a long wait in the women’s outpatient department. We charge for car parking so that we can employ security staff and make continuous improvements to our car parks. Unfortunately hospital car parks used to be a sitting target for car theft and vandalism. We felt it was vital to provide heightened security, better lighting and so on because we saw the distress caused when people’s cars were stolen or damaged but we needed to do this without taking money away from direct patient services. We are sorry you felt unsupported during your labour with your first baby. We try our best to staff the delivery suite according to demand but, as you can imagine, there are times when lots of babies arrive at once. Please be assured we are committed to supporting mothers throughout labour and if when you arrive you have any concerns at all then please ask to speak to the midwife in charge. We are looking forward to looking after you when you come in with your next baby. We appreciate you taking the time to put comments on NHS Choices; they do help us improve services for future patients.

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