"I accompanied a friend to the fracture..."
About: Queen's Medical Centre Queen's Medical Centre Nottingham NG7 2UH
Posted via NHS Choices
What could be improved
I accompanied a friend to the fracture clinic for a Monday morning appointment. We arrived at the time given, to join a queue waiting in front of a reception desk with its shutters closed. Being a fracture clinic many of the people queuing had difficulty standing or walking, and some were obviously in pain. Before long the queue went all the way to the door and then turned along inside the clinic. It then became difficult for new people arriving to see where to go to join the queue, and hard to actually get past other people to the end of the queue. It was particularly difficult for people with large crutches or in wheelchairs to move around, and there was quite a risk of people bumping into each other. This caused anxiety for people including my friend trying to avoid further hurt to injuries, and there was a generally stressful atmosphere. Time in the queue was longer than the time the actual appointment took, so this was a significant part of the experience.
There may have been a particular problem with the reception opening late on that day. But the was a bigger problem underlying this seems to be having a system that requires lots of people with damaged joints etc to come and stand in a queue. There must be a better way, such as a ticketing or a check-in system, perhaps combined with spreading out the starting time for appointments particularly at times like Monday mornings that are known to be busy. I also wonder whether people are offered the chance to book appointment times if it is less urgent.
I noticed another comment about queueing in the fracture clinic, and hope you can find ways of improving the system.