"Organised chaos"

About: Southend Hospital

I attended the walk in clinic for a blood test after being refereed by my doctor and no appointments until later in the week. I fully expected to wait for a length of time. I arrived at the hospital and booked in at 09.01. I was informed that I would have to wait approximately 45 minutes for my test and I was happy to do this. I was accompanied by my partner who had an appointment with a consultant at 11.05. At 10.30, after an hour and a half of standing with no seating, my number came up and we thought this would just give me time for my blood test and then on to my partners appointment. After being directed upstairs I was shocked to see a second waiting area. The scene made me think that someone had just emptied a cattle truck of despondent, sick people. The small area had about a dozen chairs and about thirty people waiting. Elderly and infirm stood around, some in obvious discomfort. I was told that I would have to wait around 45 minutes and that if I took my partner to her appointment on the floor below, I would have to start the whole wait again, 3 hours. I left the building as I have work in the afternoon, a late shift, I am a nurse. I was not only frustrated about the poor service given to me but embarrassed for the patients and the shoddy treatment given. Perhaps the CEO should visit and try to have a routine blood test.

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Response from Southend Hospital

Thank you for your post relating to your blood test, I am sorry to hear of the problems you have encountered. A company called Pathology First manage this service and I have sent them your comments for feedback but can I ask that you contact our PALS department for them to look into your case for you as without personal identifiable information I am unable to look into specific cases. PALS can be contacted by telephone 01702 385333 or via email pals@southend.nhs.uk Regards Louise McIver, Patient Involvement

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