"Good up until & including MRI very frustrating &..."

About: Royal Surrey County Hospital

What I liked

I normally find it less chaotic & disorganised than St. Peters.

And I like the fact it feels nicer than the average hospital when you arrive.

Efficiency of my Great GP in referring me so quickly & Neurologist for arranging MRI & not having to wait too long for the MRI scan.

Ladies taking the blood. They were funny & friendly & made the experience a more pleasant 1. Often people have difficulty taking blood samples from me, but she had no problem & caused no pain & kept checking that I was ok, as she had to take 10 samples, & wished me all the best when I left..

I would like to say I don't blame the staff as I know they are doing their best under immense pressure, workload & impossible cuts.

What could be improved

Communication to patients, I have found that they fix you up, but don't tell you very much. St Peters is better in that respect. It took 4 months for the RSCH to tell me that 1 of the blood tests I had in June showed low vitamin D ~ would have been better to have known that when the tests were done in June & not October, so that I could have self medicated on sun.

Waiting for (4 months & counting) for results is like mental torture.

Anything else?

After waking up & finding that I was numb from the waist down, severe pins & needles to my toes & from the elbows down, amongst other things, I thought I'd trapped a nerve. After it hadn't improved within a week, my parents insisted on taking me to St Peters, who carried out some pin prick & blood tests etc. & I was referred back to my GP to arrange for an MRI scan. I made an appointment with my GP who carried out some basic sensory tests, my achiles did not flinch when tapped. He referred me for an appointment with a Neurologist, A few days later I received a call from the Appointments call centre asking me which hospital I'd like to go to. For continuity, I chose St Peters, but was told it would be a 3 month wait & that the RSCH could see me at the end of June. When I arrived it was a bit chaotic as the new system had failed, meaning that my Neurologist had been allocated the entire patient list, to his credit, he had plowed through the list of everyone's patients. My paper notes had not arrived, so a Nurse was sent to find them. He carried out some tests and said I needed a full spinal & brain MRI scan which would be in 7 weeks. I was sent for 10 blood tests. MRI scan was end of July.4 months later & I am still waiting for the results of the MRI. I phoned at 9 & 11 weeks but keep being told my scan has to be referred for a scan review. In the meantime, I am left hanging, being told nothing, receiving no treatment & becoming depressed. Most days I cannot leave the house because I can barely walk & get bouts of vertigo & whilst walking they can become so bad they feel like they are going to sieze up. My arms & hands are virtually useless & everyday basic tasks are so difficult. Keep dropping things & have random feelings of a tight band around my chest & sometimes stomach, which come & go

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Response from Royal Surrey County Hospital

The Neurology Department at the Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is sorry to read of your recent experience with its service and would welcome the opportunity to formally investigate your concerns to provide a full explanation. With regard to the delay you note you incurred in receiving the results of your MRI scan, it is often necessary for MRI scans to be reviewed by a Neuroradiologist before results can be accurately interpreted and relayed to both the patient and their GP. This process unfortunately can incur a delay, but is considered necessary to ensure appropriate quality of care for the patient. It is always our aim to be clear with the patient about what to expect and the timeframes involved with this, and we are sorry if on this occasion this did not happen. Please be assured that any urgent results are screened out without delay and efforts are being made to ensure that any outstanding routine results are now being communicated to patients and their GPs as soon as possible. Please contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) if you would like the Trust to look into the matter further: rsc-tr.pals@nhs.net

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