"Inflexible radiology (scan) appointment booking"

About: St Peter's Hospital (Chertsey)

(as the patient),

Rang the hospital this morning following a visit to the GP, to make an appointment as advised. Was provided an appointment but I soon found out (only two hours later) that I could not make the appointment.

Rang the hospital back and was told that if I cancelled this appointment I would have to send a form in (provided to me by my Dr) and an appointment would be sent out to me, which could be changed if inconvenient. I asked why this was and I was told that it was because I would have taken someone else's opportunity to book an appointment. I asked if anyone had asked specifically for that date and she repeated the same line above.

All I wanted to do was move it back to another day - I was never told when making the appointment that I would not be allowed to change it once it was made. So now I either cancel the appointment and wait several weeks (or even months!) for the scan, or I try and cancel my commitments on the day that it has been booked for.

I was under the impression that outpatient care was being made flexible so as to ensure that all patients are seen to and appointments are not wasted? If I didn't turn up because I couldn't cancel my commitments, wouldn't there still be a slot available for a patient who wanted to book and called after me?

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Response from Ashford and St. Peter's Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust We have made a change

We are sorry that you found our ultrasound scan booking service to be inflexible and have taken your feedback on board.

In the past we have experienced patients calling up on the day of their appointment to cancel and rearrange for a different time and it is often then too late to offer the appointment to another patient. This is why we have strict procedures in place for rescheduling appointments but that said, we do try to be flexible and accommodate the patient whenever possible.

In the future we will certainly try and be more flexible and offer patients who wish to rebook an alternative appointment within seven days.