Appointment woe

First published in Postbag

I WAS recently sent a letter from an address in Bristol, which the envelope forbade me to contact.

Of the six pages inside the envelope, three were blank.

I was told to phone for an appointment at Salisbury District Hospital within five days, or be knocked off the consultant’s list.

British Telecom profited from my repeated failure to get through to the hospital switchboard.

At last I got an appointment by phoning at 8.40am.

I am an OAP. How many working people cannot make an appointment because the lines are blocked when they are able to phone the hospital?

I was ordered to tell the booking team if the appointment was no longer needed. “Please” was omitted.

There was a warning that I would be sent back to my GP if I missed an appointment without telling the hospital.

For 26 years, successive consultants have cared for me, since an operation in 1988, and will do until my demise.

My estimable GP would have to send me back to the hospital. Of course I always attend my hospital appointments.

It is regrettable that patients have to be threatened and ordered about.

Previously a polite one or two page letter came from the department or the hospital giving details of the appointment and contact details to change it. Why not revert to that system?

Richard Maples, Salisbury


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