"A and E"

About: Moorfields Eye Hospital (City Road)

As an NHS Employee I dont like to give negative feedback on one of our services but had a very poor experience when visiting A&E 3 weeks ago. I attended my local hospital suffering from from problems focusing and dizzyness, where I was given a referral letter to take to Moorfields. In the first hour I was called by about 3 different people to repeat my name and address and attempt to pass on the letter but this was declined each time. I wondered why there was not one person who could take the address and symptom details rather than being moved from seating area to seating area. Eventually I settled in for the what I was informed would be a long wait, but as i had been in discomfort for some weeks I thought it necessary. I eventually was seen by a doctor who clearly was having a bad day. The doctor was short and blunt in conversation and seemed to decide within seconds that I was a time waster, telling me that my problems were related to my age (I'm in my 40's). I had to talk over the doctor to explain the problems were a very recent development and that i had a letter from the other hospital. What surprised me more was the doctor's attitude to colleagues who the doctor asked to assist them in carrying out a few brief tests. I felt genuinely embarrassed for 2 staff who were ordered about in a patronising manner and reprimanded in front of a patient. I was told I had a dry eye problem and should use eye drops, any product would do and was given a letter for my GP. After 4 hours I felt as though my time and the time of the staff there had been wasted by my attendance. Thankfully i kept a prearranged appointment with my optician the next morning, who read the letter from Moorfields and was able to explain further that the dry eye condition I had was an extreme case and that they would have recommended a number of ointments and eye products which I was give details of. I've also been advised by the optician that I may need to go back to Moorfields if this doesnt clear up the problem, but would now be very reluctant to do so. We all have stressful days in our work but being dismissive of people who have waited 4 hours to be seen is unprofessional.

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Response from Moorfields Eye Hospital (City Road)

I'm sorry to hear about this. It is not the kind of approach we expect from our staff and you should certainly not have been made to feel uncomfortable about returning to the hospital. I have forwarded your comments to the A&E management team. If you would like this issue to be investigated in more detail, please contact our patient advice and liaison service (PALS) via pals@moorfields.nhs.uk. They will be able to look into the specifics of your case, ensure any necessary action is taken and advise you about returning for a follow up vist should you need to.