"Lack of compassion, understanding and urgency"

About: Medway Maritime Hospital

Anything else?

My father (74) was referred in great pain by his GP to Surgical Assessment on with a very large hernia weighting approx 4 / 5 pounds. He is also diabetic and is on heart medication.

After a 8 hour wait on the ward, he was admitted overnight to Sunderland ward at approx 11.30pm.He was told the following morning before he was discharged at 2pm, that surgery would necessary but as he is on heart medication, he would need a full medical review before his surgery would be scheduled. We fully understand the need for that but when we asked how long it would be before we get the appointment for the medical assessment, we were told up to 13 weeks and then possibly another 13 weeks before surgery.

Great ..... 74 years old, in pain, carrying a 4lb hernia around with you and no immediate prospect of necessary surgery.

Previous personal experience with this hospital shows that if your over 70, don`t hold your breath.

Understanding and urgency is not at the top of this hospital`s list.

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Responses

Response from Medway Maritime Hospital

I am very sorry to hear about your father's condition and that you feel he is not receiving satisfactory care. It is difficult to address each of your concerns without more detail but generally, if a patient is referred from their GP for surgery, we must get the patient an outpatient appointment within 13 weeks. However, in many cases patients do not wait this long and if the referral is graded as urgent, we expedite the referral. Once the patient has been reviewed and the best course of treatment decided upon, he/she will then be sent for pre-assessment to check everything is in order and have their operation booked.

From the date we receive the referral from the GP, treatment must be completed in a total of 18 weeks, including the wait for an outpatient appointment and any diagnostic tests. Where the referral is urgent, treatment is completed sooner if it is safe and appropriate to do so.

If you would like to discuss your concerns in more detail, please do not hesitate to contact me and I will be happy to discuss the matter in more detail with you.

Alex Hoile

Senior Operational Manager

Breast, Colorectal and General Surgery

Email: alexandra.hoile@medway.nhs.uk

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