"Not a good experience which left my daughter..."

About: Queen Elizabeth I I Hospital (Welwyn Garden City)

What I liked

Mostly the staff at ENT were very good and patient with us and for this I am very grateful and thank them.

What could be improved

It is the whole process that was lacking, and the inappropriate comments from the admin office which, if the true reflection of a situation or people's feeling, should if nothing else be dealt with internally and not voiced to patients. Such comments do not show the staff and hospital in a professional light and wipe out trust.

Anything else?

Our experience stretched from mid-May to mid-June 2012. We contacted PAL, however after being promptly called back for some details that I had accidentally omitted from my email, we never heard again.

I appreciate that people have far greater and more serious issues for which they need to visit a hospital than we had, but the fact that an issue might be relatively minor is no excuse for poor or dismissive treatment.

We were booked in to have a foreign body removed from my daughter's ear under general anesthetic in mid-May. Unfortunately on the day of the procedure she became so agitated that we were told it would not be safe to proceed. I appreciate that she was scared to start with and it might have gone the same way regardless but it didn't help how things were handled (against our suggestion) and this appeared to escalate the situation.

We were told to make a new appointment. We were given a date four weeks later, and over one month from when the body was inserted in my daughter's ear. I questioned whether it would be safe to wait until then because the ENT doctor who originally booked us in, as well as the staff at Minor Injuries where we originally went and out GP told us that organic matter should be removed in around one week. However the person I was speaking with told me that up to 6 weeks would be fine and that having gone through the cases with the surgeon he/she was happy with the date, that we were only booked in so quickly before because there was availability and that some of the hospital doctors are young and are not sure about what they sometimes say. This is when I contacted PAL, to help clarify things and to make them aware of the previous comment. I tried for some time to access the Concerns and Complaints page unsuccessfully and had decided to leave it. However an unplanned chat with an acquaintance who works with children in hospital convinced me to post this comment, if nothing else for the benefit of other patients.

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Response from Queen Elizabeth I I Hospital

We're so glad that you have persevered in contacting us as we feel your experiences and concerns needs to be looked in to - we wonder if you would e-mail us at generalenquiries.enh-tr@nhs.net so that these important matters can be followed up. And please don't worry, this e-mail account is monitored daily so we will pick it and make sure its attended to. In the meantime, please accept our apologies for your poor experience of our services.

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