"waiting times and attitudes towards patients"

About: Ninewells Hospital / Radiotherapy Perth Royal Infirmary / General Medicine Perth Royal Infirmary / Ophthalmology

(as the patient),

This part is regarding the eye clinic.

My appointment was 1. 30pm ...I was eventually taken at 1. 55pm ....when I asked  why I had been kept waiting 25 mins after my appointment time, the staff member  was not happy that I was questioning this and advised me that ...they were very easy going here we don't bother much about time ....well I'm sorry but that attitude is not acceptable and as a patient I am entitled to question why I am kept waiting all that time .....

What was good?  My eye was sorted,   but was not pleasant ..

What was bad? Being kept waiting and staff with a poor attitude

This part is about oncology.

I have also undergone breast cancer treatment over the last year and found exactly the same re. appointments running late...I was not taken on time for any of my appointments...particularly the day I was to be given the diagnosis and treatment ...I was kept waiting 1 hour and 50 minutes that particular day and had to ask someone twice how much longer it would be...this is totally unacceptable ...on other appointments it varied from 35 mins to 2 hours........my chemo treatments however were nearly always on time as were my radiotherapy treatments in Dundee......the appointments I have the problem with were the ones for x rays ...scans and the clinics......I am aware that consultants etc. are overworked and that hospitals are understaffed but as a patient I have a right to question these issues as no-one comes to inform patients that clinics are running late which surely is only a matter of courtesy ....and regarding support after cancer treatment, I found staff to be very patronising and no support whatsoever.

What was good? ...my cancer consultant was absolutely.. BRILLIANT..

What was bad? ...the appointments running late in all clinics...and the lack of support.....

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Response from Alison Moss, Feedback Manager, NHS Tayside

Dear “Caterina”

Thank you for sharing your experience via Patient Opinion. I am extremely sorry that you have found both the level of service and the attitude of staff to be unsatisfactory. This is certainly not the standard of behaviour or the level of service we aim to provide.

I understand that both clinics you mention are extremely busy and attend to a significant number of patients attending for assessment, review and treatment. Outpatient clinic appointments are based on average consultation times, which are suitable for the majority of patients, however it is recognised that some consultations may take longer than anticipated leading to delays in the original clinic schedule. It is standard practice for nursing teams, when they are aware that patients are waiting longer than anticipated, to keep patients up to date with any known delay to their appointment time. I am therefore extremely sorry that this has not been your experience and you have not been adequately informed of the delay, or the reason for this.

I would very much welcome the opportunity to look into the issues you have highlighted in more detail. If you would be happy to do so, I would be grateful if you could contact me via the Complaints and Feedback Team on 0800 027 5507 (freephone) or email feedback.tayside@nhs.net.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Alison Moss

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