"Operation cancelled at short notice for the 2nd..."

About: Leicester Royal Infirmary

Very disappointed to receive a telephone call yesterday afternoon informing me that my daughters operation scheduled for today has been cancelled. This is now the second time this has happened to my daughter. As parents we try our very best to prepare our children for any procedure they require which is what we had done again for the second time.

My daughter when returning from school yesterday to be told again it had been cancelled burst into tears and asked "why is it my operation they have cancelled again"? Whilst I fully appreciate that procedures have to be prioritised it is very hard trying to explain to your child that they are not as important as another. This is now the second week of annual leave that I have scheduled in order to look after my daughter as she will not be able to go to school for 1 week following the operation, 2 weeks of annual leave lost!

We have now been waiting just over 24 weeks for this operation which is a long time for an anxious child who was told in great detail what the operation would entail by a Consultant early June. PALS contacted, very sympathetic ear but unfortunately it doesn't make a difference to the way we feel.

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Response from Leicester Royal Infirmary

Dear Reviewer,

I am very sorry that we have had to cancel your daughter’s operation again. Ordinarily I would investigate the issues and would feedback to you with a new date for surgery.

However we have had to take the decision to cancel all but clinical urgent paediatric cases to support our paediatric colleagues and I therefore know that it is very unlikely that I will be able to arrange a date for surgery this side of Christmas.

Currently the Children’s Hospital is experiencing high levels of emergency admissions coupled with reduced staffing levels.

This means that it is not appropriate to admit large numbers of elective children for surgery.We do have some level of certainty that from January the situation will improve and we are therefore working with our paediatric colleagues to plan for increased operating in January and February.

This is why my waiting list team have let you know that the operation is likely to be in the New Year, although at the moment we are unable to agree dates.

I do recognise that you may wish to discuss this further with me.

If you do wish to discuss this further then please send through your daughter’s details with your contact details to me on Angharad.rastrick@uhl-tr.nhs.uk and I will ring you back.

Kind regards,

Angharad Rastrick

General Manager

Leicester's Hospitals

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