"Outpatient waiting time in the Allergy clinic"
About: Royal Surrey County Hospital Royal Surrey County Hospital Guildford GU2 7XX
In September 2012 I had an extreme allergic reaction to something I ate, my throat swelled, I couldn't swallow and was wheezing. I was on holiday in America and luckily for me there was a doctor in the restaurant who had allergy meds to hand! This was my first ever reaction to food, and I'm 32, so guessing the cause is a little tricky. My GP wrote to the allergy clinic at the Royal Surrey so that I could be tested for food allergies/intolerances and I expected a wait of 6-12 weeks. I called several times in the past few months chasing my appointment, and have been told the department is short staffed with a backlog of work. Whilst I've avoided eating what I think caused the first reaction, Ive had 3 further reactions since September with similar severity, and am not sure exactly what triggered these. Today, after 5 months of waiting, I have received my appointment and its for the end of October 2013, nearly 8 months away! This website says that the average waiting time for a first appointment is 27.33 days, so either it's extremely out of date or something went wrong for me. I'm not happy about spending the next 8 months in fear that next time I eat out my throat will swell up. Of course I have the option of private testing, but this is expensive, or commercial testing but this website seems to suggest it isn't always accurate. I'm not at all blaming the doctors and nurses as i'm sure they are doing the best job they can, but I find it really difficult to understand how any manager could find a 13 month wait for a first appointment acceptable! I would very much like a response as to what's gone wrong here and should I really wait 8 months or should i go back to my GP for advice (which I am reluctant to do as it seems I would be taking an appointment unnecessarily)??