"Cost to install a TV in the day clinic?"

About: Lincoln County Hospital / Clinical haematology

(as the patient),

Yesterday I visited the Day Clinic at Lincoln County Hospital, for a weekly venesection.

I was informed a kindly person had donated £500 for the purchase of a large screen TV, for the ward (currently there isn't one). It would be a spot on acquisition for both patients and staff alike.

The head of the department responsible for the installation of the appliance has stated it would cost £500 to install, citing the cost of wall fixing bracket, complete power rerouting and TV aerial.

I know a bracket would cost cost £25.00 on Amazon. There are numerous 13 amp sockets in the immediate vicinity of the location of the TV. Use one of those (free). A good indoor aerial would cost £50.00 tops. Somebody is trying to make a fast buck here.

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Response from United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Dear Antiripoff,

Thank you for taking the time to post your comments on the Patient Opinion website.

We would like to clarify a couple of points you have made, hopefully the explanation will make things clearer.

Firstly, the figure of £500 which has been quoted for installation is very much a ‘worst-case scenario’. There is no suggestion the installation would cost this full amount. However, there are some elements the cost of which may be unavoidable.

For example, indoor aerials cannot be used in the hospital environment. All TV equipment has to be connected to a digital aerial. If there is no existing digital connection a new cable has to be fed to that area either to connect to an existing digital aerial or new aerial. There would clearly be a cost incurred in possibly purchasing and siting a new aerial and running cabling.

The same may also apply to power supplies. Whilst there may be power sockets in the area, the Trust has a health and safety duty to ensure staff and members of the public are not put at risk. It may be necessary to provide additional sockets to ensure wires are not trailing or at risk of being grabbed or otherwise caught. For example, it is not safe to connect a wall-mounted television to a power supply at floor level.

The other thing to remember is that any figure quoted for installation may not actually require a physical payment to be made to a tradesman. The Trust employs maintenance staff who may well be able to carry out some or all of the installation.

In these circumstances, the Trust operates a system known as ‘internal recharging’. In essence, this means, for example, some money from the budget for the Day Clinic will be moved, on paper, to the budget for the maintenance staff to cover the cost of the work they have carried out. This does not involve any physical payment, rather an internal movement of funds on paper. Internal recharging is a common finance function and is used across most public services to ensure the true ‘cost’ of a service can be correctly identified.

We hope this response is helpful. We can assure you that, as a Trust, we are always seeking to make best use of the limited funds we have.

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