"No follow-up, but passing the buck is alive and..."

About: St Thomas' Hospital (London)

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I was treated very well during my 999 call, by the EMT staff and by the staff at the Emergency Medical Unit on Monday, October 14. I was discharged with the information that my GP would be advised that I needed an urgent MRI and that, if I didn't hear from them within a couple of days, that I should follow up. Four days of excruciating pain later, I'd heard nothing, so I contacted my GP. They didn't know what I was talking about. I then called the number on my discharge papers, and useless person number one said "we have no record of you having been here; you must have given a different name." After an interminable time waiting while she shuffled papers, I was then told I would be transferred to another dept that "would be able to help me." I was then hung up on three times because she couldn't complete a simple call transfer. Then I reached useless person number two, who also didn't believe that I'd been seen at St. Thomas's, and asked (again and again) for my DOB and name details, as if I'd make this stuff up and further, as if I'd waste my time talking with these people if I didn't have a proper need to do so. She then transferred me to useless person number three, who had me read the discharge papers to him (they don't have these themselves?) He then said "oh, that's your responsibility - take that to your GP and have them schedule an MRI." I said, "that's not what the doctor told me; she said 'we'll contact your GP and if you don't hear from them, then follow up,' to which useless person number three said, with finality "we don't do that." To sum up, I was in such pain that I had to call 999. I received instructions that turned out to be false, and I was seen, with copious notes taken, only to have no record of my admission just a few days later (and I was accused of giving a different name). Unacceptable at every level with regard to follow-up, and potentially life-threatening if it happened to someone with a more serious ailment. I'm in excruciating pain and that could have been alleviated much sooner with proper follow-up.

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Response from St Thomas' Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to feedback. We are sorry to hear about your recent concerns. We would be grateful if you could contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) via pals@gstt.nhs.uk or by calling 020 7188 8801 so that we can investigate this matter further.

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