"Treatment was free. Doctors and ..."

About: Bristol Eye Hospital

(as the patient),

What I liked

Treatment was free.

Doctors and nurses were friendly.

What could be improved

Appointments are scheduled by post only a few weeks before the date of the appointment. This means that it's very hard for me to make plans, either to make sure I'm not traveling/working on the day of an appointment, or to be treated elsewhere when I realize how long the queue is.

The long waiting times are also impacting my care negatively. Once I was left on steroid eye drops for two extra months (albeit at low doses) simply because of how long it took for a followup appointment. Right now, I've been waiting 7 months for an appointment.

Anything else?

Clear communication to patients about the date of their next appointment would be very helpful. Why not schedule followup appointments before patients leave the hospital?

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Bristol Eye Hospital

I am very sorry you have had such a poor experience at the Bristol Eye Hospital and have had to raise these concerns. We use feedback constructively to understand how our services might need to improve. We are working to improve the number of appointments available by increasing capacity in a variety of ways. We aim to book outpatient appointments 6 weeks in advance as this should give patients enough time to make arrangements, but sometimes have to book these at short notice. We are planning to review the administration of follow-up appointments at the Bristol Eye Hospital to improve patients' experiences, this should help us to avoid further delays and cancellations.

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