"Nottingham City Hospital: good care but poor admin"

About: City Hospital campus / Cardiology

(as the patient),

I would like to praise Dr Baig and his technical staff and all the nurses during my stay in the Trent Cardiac Unit for my angioplasty - the treatment I received was excellent.

However the administration side was appalling. First I tried to book transport on the 'phone number given to take me into hospital, but was unable to get through because it was continuously engaged for the whole week prior to my admission even after holding on for up to 45 minutes.

On the morning of my procedure I was instucted to 'phone the ward to confirm that a bed was available for me. I could't get through after listening to many recorded messages. Eventually I contacted the main switchboard who finally managed to connect me.

After my procedure I asked if transport could be provided to take me home. The reaction I received was totally off-hand and disdainful and I was told that the manager had said I had to make my own arrangements by contacting relatives, friends and neighbours. I explained that my relatives live 120 miles away and that I live in sheltered accomodation and that my friends and neighbours are elderly and do not drive.

It was made clear to me that cost was the driving force behind the manager's decision. After being told that the hospital had fulfilled it's job and that transport was not their responsibility, I was told to get a taxi but I explained that after being told not to bring any valuables into hospital I only had 70p with me. I was then told to go to a cash machine to withdraw some money. Of course I did not take any debit or credit cards into hospital so how was I supposed to get some cash? After the way I was treated I felt very anxious and distressed.

Eventually I was offered a voucher to pay for a taxi, but I was so upset at having to beg for help I'm afraid my pride was ruffled and I refused this. The cost of transport to and from the hospital was a substantial sum of over £40, which represents a third of my weekly State Pension.

I not only suffer from ischaemic heart disease but also have a chronic chest complaint and insulin treated diabetes and have been quite poorly. I think this aspect of patient care should be investigated and improvements made and at least patients in similar circumstances could be treated more sympathetically.

I hope the chief executive has sight of this and I look forward to their reply.

I sent this complaint to the NUH Feedback site on 10 days ago and have not had an acknowledgement of receipt up till now - I must say I'm very disappointed.

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