"ambulance problems meant I missed my care worker visit"

About: Gloucestershire Royal Hospital / Nephrology South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust / Patient transport service (PTS)

(as the patient),

I was given the Patient Opinion number to ring by one of the ambulance drivers; the number was on a sticker on the window.

Three times a week I go to the dialysis unit at gloucester royal hospital. Me and the other people are picked up, and taken home by ambulance. They pick me up ok but sometimes we are left waiting to go home, this makes the day very long after 4 hours of dialysis.

Yesterday the ambulance that was supposed to come for two of the ladies didn’t arrive and we had to take one of the home with us. She really was a poorly lady. I don’t mind that we needed to take other people home but it meant I missed the visit from my care worker. Luckily she came back later.

Usually the ambulances turn up on time and we don’t have too many problems but there have been problems with them being late or ones not arriving.

Also is seems like we all arrive at once to gloucester royal hospital for dialysis but sometimes there are not enough machines so we have to wait. I think it would be really good if times could be staggered.

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Response from Gloucestershire Royal Hospital

Many thanks for your feedback. We will ensure your comments are passed to the dialysis teams and the staff who organise the ambulance service. If you would like to discuss any of this in greater detail please do get in touch: http://www.gloshospitals.nhs.uk/en/Contact-Us/Contact-Us/

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Response from Sara Coburn, Patient Engagement Manager, Governance, South Western Ambulance Service Foundation Trust

Hello Opal343

Thank you for getting in touch. I am sorry that an issue with your ambulance transport impacted on your care worker visit.

I have looked into any possible events that may have caused a vehicle not to arrive on time to collect the two ladies that you mention, however I am not able to find anything in particular. The only circumstances that would delay a vehicle arriving to transport a patient would be those that were unexpected, like a vehicle breaking down or heavy traffic. I would suggest that something of this nature happened on this occasion.

Our service has an agreement with Gloucester Royal Hospital to take dialysis patients into hospital at the same time; some for morning appointments and some for afternoon appointments. This allows the hospital to make the best use of its dialysis facilities. It also means that we are able to transport patients living in the same area to and from their appointments together. This allows us to make the very best use of our transport resources. However, we are aware that some patients require longer or shorter appointments and this can mean a waiting time to travel home and we do understand that this can make a long day feel even longer. Our staff will always do their best to get you home as quickly and as comfortably as possible.

If you would like to discuss your concerns further you can contact our Patient Experience Team on 01392 251585 or email makingexperiencescount@swast.nhs.uk who will be pleased to assist you.

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