"Delays in treatment and care for heart condition"

About: Aberdeen Royal Infirmary / Cardiology / Coronary Care Unit Dr Gray's Hospital / General Medicine

(as a relative),

My husband is only in his 30s. He became unwell first in February of 2012 and was admitted to Dr Gray's hospital in Elgin because he had Atrial Fibrillation. He has had near constant ill health since this time. He has been admitted twice more for AF, despite now being on medication, the last time resulting in Dr Gray's referring my husband to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary for an Angiogram.

We had been waiting very patiently for a referral for a second opinion with ARI, prior to the last two admissions to hospital, only to be told on the day of the angiogram by ARI staff that we had failed to attend the appointment they had allocated my husband about a month prior.

We had not missed an appointment, as the secretary for the Cardiologist concerned contacted us by telephone to offer an appointment, which we said we couldn't attend because it was on the same day that we moved house. We were then told that a further appointment would be sent to us in the post as the Cardiologist was taking annual leave at that point. As I have said we waited very patiently for this new appointment, we even visited the GP on at least two occasions to chase it up. In the meantime, the Cardiologist, having returned from annual leave, duly wrote to the GP saying due to non-attendance he was not offering to see my husband at all.

We are concerned that the NHS medical secretary did not do as she should have, and arranged another appointment for us, and instead has told the Cardiologist she works for we didn't show up! If my husband wasn't so seriously ill, I would laugh! But he is very ill and this is no laughing matter. To say I'm disgusted would be an understatement.

I have sought advice from The Atrial Fibrillation Association and they have given us the name of an Electrophysiologist at ARI who is well recommended for AF investigation and treatment. I have my fingers crossed from here and hope sincerely my husband is taken better care of from here in. I will also be putting in a complaint to ARI PALS about the secretary concerned. If my husband was an old man I could understand a more relaxed approach to his heart condition but he isn't, he is still so young and we have young children to think about, who need their dad to be here for them.

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Responses

Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian

We are sorry to hear of your poor experience and hope that your complaint has been managed and resolved by our Feedback Team. We thank you for taking the time to post your experience and hope that your husband is receiveing the care he requires. We take all feedback seriously and would hope to learn from any negative comments.

Kind regards

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