"Terrible experience trying to get my son seen by..."

About: Darent Valley Hospital

The process for getting a referral to the pediatric services at this hospital/health service are extraordinarily unclear. Initial general referral to the Pediatric team, by GP for my son who has multiple conditions, was rejected and the process had to be started all over again a month later. Impossible to get through to the team involved in taking referrals to find out what's going on and an explanation for their approach. The switchboard at this hospital frequently rings out. There is no way to leave a message for someone to call back by calling the switchboard. When I was (eventually) able to get through to the switchboard operator I was asked for a specific extension number or name of a person - I don't have a specific name as the referral was made to the 'team' Seems there is no way to be put through to the pediatric department without already having an appointment with a specific doctor - very circular. When I got through to the community pediatrics team, I was told that someone would call me back, but they never did. Things seem to run somewhat better over at the Queen Mary site which at least has a webpage for its pediatric team, a phone number and someone who answers the phone and can look up details of referrals - but can't actually help us because we don't live in the Queen Mary's area.

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Response from Darent Valley Hospital

We are sorry that there seems to have been some confusion over your son’s referral to Darent Valley Hospital and that you have also experienced trouble contacting the department. We are pleased to confirm that you have now been contacted and that your son has been offered an appointment this Wednesday afternoon. Kind regards The Communication Department Darent Valley Hospital

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