"Could not be worse"

About: Kettering General Hospital

I have had the misfortune of needing to use this service over the last 4 years for my son. It has been so awful its hard to know where to start. By the time we finally got seen for his monthly ear infections and delayed speech he had significant difficulties. On arrival at first appt we were sent for a hearing test. There was a very long wait. As he didn't have an infection that day he passed. Explaining that he would fail with an infection was ignored and we were actually discharged! I had to write to get seen again. Luckily(!) he has an infection that day so we were allowed to be seen by doctor. I said his speech had got worse and the doctor kindly discharged us again. On two occasions I have had a pantomimes in the consulting room where I have asked for second opinions before I would leave. My son has had to have 3 lots of grommet surgery. After each one he is discharged so when they fall out we have to go through the above rigmarole again. Once I paid privately on a credit card in desperation. Unlike other areas they also refuse to put in permanent grommets until each one comes out 3 times! So that can mean 6 general anaesthetics for children, if you are lucky enough to be seen nd helped.

Other areas will act much quicker.

There is a lovely play area for the children in the waiting room. Unfortunately we got called through for out appt and then waited 25 minutes in the corridor until I took my poor son back into the playroom. I think that is to stop the doctors walking 6 steps to the playroom.

Last time I was there some parents turned up and were sent away as the audiology list was full and the doctor wouldn't see them unless they had a hearing test.

It is an appalling failing service and I dread to think how many children are in this area with serious delayed speech and development because of it. My son is still have a lot of difficulties at school because of this.

The speech and language service are well aware of these issues and seem quite despairing of it.

I would do anything to not have to be seen there again with my son.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Kettering General Hospital

I am very disappointed to hear about your experience in our Ear, Nose and Throat department. Please could you contact me directly on 01536 491713 to discuss yours problems further.

Rachael Brown Surgery Lead Nurse

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