"frustrating and terrible"

About: University Hospital Lewisham

What I liked

I had the misfortune of attending Suite 3 for out patient orthopaedic clinic. It must be the worst waiting room ever, terrible signage to find it, at least 50 people wait at a time. No windows, airless, tiny, miserable. No room for patients who had been dumped there from wards, poor lighting, dirty floor, busy reception but very difficult to find out what's going on once you're signed in. There is a whiteboard with scrawled information about 3 clinics but no idea if it's correct and people stand in front of it as there is not enough chairs.

Nurses/assistants walk about looking busy, avoid eye contact with everyone and fail to give regular updates if a consultant is away/running late. The first time i went, i waited 3 hours, to be told i needed an MRI scan (which I knew from the cramped A&E i visited the previous sunday). I was told by an SHO who a) didn't apologise/acknowledge my wait or b) explain why i wasn't seeing the consultant as promised or c) introduce himself . A nurse was more interested in talking. After waiting for 3 hours i was less than impressed. Then the SHO gave me a badly photocopied sheet for me to take to the MRI suite to get a scan date...... 2 floors and a long walk with crutches away I met a disinterested receptionist who promptly told me she couldn't get into the diary as "not her job" and advised to call back. I pointed to the urgent note on my referral - she merely took a highlighter pen and kindly highlighted it so that people would see it. Unbelievable and terrible service.

I visited Suite 3 again to have consultat read the MRI. I waited for 2 hours and the waiting room was even more packed. It transpired ddue to waiting list I can't have arthroscopy until June. I will be exploring other options via my GP. I never want to see that place again!

What could be improved

Suite 3 waiting room - 3 clinics wait there and it is hellish.... for such a a busy clinical space with many patients in wheelchairs/ broken limbs, poor mobility with crutches etc it's appalling and embarrassing.

regular updates from nursing staff - everyone appears busy but please keep us involved/updated with delays

Anything else?

no

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