"A&E children's services, and Treetops outpatients clinic"

About: University Hospital Of North Durham / Accident and emergency University Hospital Of North Durham / Trauma and orthopaedics

(as a parent/guardian),

I took my son to A&E 3 weeks ago following an accident in which he fractured his wrist in 2 places. I arrived at 9pm, worried that we would be sat for hours. I could not have been more wrong.

The receptionist was extremely polite, she conversed with my 7 year old son about his accident rather than talking over him, which I thought was good. She then told us we would be seen within a few minutes by a nurse practitioner. We sat down, only to be called literally 3 minutes later by the nurse practitioner, where again, the person on duty conversed with my son about what had happened.

We were then told to go straight to X-ray, where we were again seen within 5 minutes, before we returned to the nurse practitioners room, where the X-ray was immediately reviewed and my sons arm was placed in a cast.

All in all, we were in and our within 40 minutes, completely distressed and happy to be back at home at a reasonable hour! I cannot commend this service enough.

On a downside, I took my daughter today to an routine outpatient appointment, I arrived 15 minutes early and waited to be seen. A family arrived shortly after us, stating they were 40 minutes late for their appointment, it got to 35 minutes after our original appointment time and these people were allowed to go in before us, making my appointment (and the rest of the clinic) a total of 50 minutes late.

Although the receptionist & the nurse on duty made sure we got in swiftly after these people left, I do not think that it is fair to people who turn up on time to be pushed back because of the people who are late. These people should be made to either wait until the end of clinic or be made to rearrange their appointments and I hope this system is looked at.

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