"Father's appointment at Stafford Hospital "

About: Stafford Hospital / Clinical oncology

(as a relative),

I attended the oncology clinic with my Father recently. His appointment was scheduled for 11.45, we arrived at the clinic at arounf 11.30 to ensure we were on time and in place.

We were initially told the clinic was running around 90 minutes behind schedule due to the way patients had been allocated their slots with a new doctor. We decided to go and kill some time so spent an hour in the hospital canteen before slowly making our way back.

On our return, while were waiting, a nurse came out and apologised to us all again for the delay and explained that the problem was, there was a new doctor on duty so whoever had booked the appointments had booked 5 minutes per patient as an "introductory appointment" to the new doctor.We were surprised that such a thing could be done when such a clinic has to deal with such an important condition and people need attention as soon as possible in many cases.

We eventually got in to see the doctor at 14.05, some 2 hours and 20 minutes after the scheduled slot. I was particularly disappointed as Dad has lost a lot of weight and found sitting in a certain position for so long on hard seats very uncomfortable. I also had taken time off work and lost time and money where I could've been earning possibly another 2 hours worth.

These staff and doctors could not have been better or more apologetic but they should not have been put in the situation of having to explain a situation to sick patients.

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Response from Charlotte Garrity, Communications Officer, Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust We have made a change

I really appreciate you taking the time to leave us feedback. I have spoken to the Head of Cancer Services, Tracey Weetman, and she has asked me to reply to you on her behalf:

" I would like to offer you our most sincere apologies for what was clearly an unacceptable wait to see the oncologist with your father. The oncologist concerned is new to the Trust and this is their first appointment as a Consultant, and as such was meeting patients for the first time. This meant a delay in appointments as time was given to each patient to answer their queries. As a result of feedback from yourself and other patients future clinics have been given longer time slots to avoid the wait and improve the quality of the experience for our patients."

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