"Tonsillectomy Infection - A&E"

About: East Surrey Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as the patient),

I had to make a late night visit to A&E due to a nasty infection after tonsillectomy. Despite the waiting area being real very busy with a lot of people in bad tempers the staff on reception were incredibly friendly and welcoming and were going above and beyond to make everyone feel welcome.

Due to the infection I had lost my voice, so when my name got called I couldn't tell the nurse I was there. Instead I just stood up with my Grandmother (who had driven me to the hospital as I was in no state to drive) and walked over to the door leading to the next area. The nurse didn't look up once from their sheet and simply shut the door. It couldn't have been more than 30 seconds after they said my name. Cue me looking like an idiot as I knocked very loudly on said door (auto-shuts after all) to try and get them back.

After that little mix up the nurse in question wasn't rude but equally left a lot to be desired when it came to being friendly. Thankfully the reception staff at the second waiting area and the doctor I eventually saw were wonderful so that made up for it. All in all I would call this a relatively good experience.

One thing to note! Lots of smokers were congregating just out the front entrance to A&E. Now I myself was a smoker (pre-tonsillectomy) but that is just plain rude and frankly disrespectful to everyone in that unit to smoke just outside the door. I know it's not in the job remit, but would it be possible to have someone tell them that just isn't acceptable behaviour?

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Response from Cathy White, Patient Experience Lead, Patient Experience Team, Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust

Dear SurreyGirl,

Thank you for sharing your experience of both your tonsillectomy and your visit to our emergency department. It is always good to hear that our reception staff are friendly and welcoming. I will take your observation about smokers and the disposition of the nurse to the attention of the managers of our emergency department.

With best wishes,

Cathy White

Patient experience lead

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