"Trauma and Orthopaedics Outpatients"

About: Southmead Hospital

Today's visit was another frustrating visit to this department! I have to say I was very impressed on my first visit. But the last two have been very unpleasant experiences. In May our appointment was two and a half hours late and today we were kept waiting for three hours. After waiting for two and a half hours we asked at the reception desk how much longer it would be only to find out the person who had checked us in after having an X-ray hadn't done it. They were apparantly there on work experience! Many of the patients were complaining that they had been waiting in excess of two hours. Our wait was three hours. What I find really disappointing is when you go to the receptionist in the trauma and ortho clinic (12 area b) to check in or ask a question you stand there waiting to be acknowledged, it's like you are invisible, when they finally look up your presence is clearly a nuisance.I accept clinics may run late with emergencies etc but it would really help if an explanation, apology or an indication of how late clinics are running could be given. I would like to finish on a positive note when we finally get to see the consultant on all three occasions they have been excellent.

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Response from Southmead Hospital

Dear Anonymous – I was pleased to hear your consultations were excellent, but I was sorry to read of the poor staff attitude and frustrating waits you experienced. Action is being taken to review how the Trauma and Orthopaedics Outpatients and x-ray departments coordinate the flow of patients which should improve the journey through the department. Regrettably however Trauma and Orthopaedics Outpatients is often very busy and the numbers of patients attending can vary significantly depending on how many have suffered injury in the preceding period. Please be assured that the numbers are tracked and at certain times of the year extra staff are employed to cope with expected additional demand. I have passed back your comments to the outpatients team so they can be aware of the impact their poor attitude has had. The Trust expect all staff to be helpful, responsive and empathetic Thank you again for taking the time and trouble to provide your feedback. Kind regards – Steve Sykes Advice and Complaints Team

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