"Patient care and treatment "

About: Royal Cornwall Hospital (Treliske)

(as a friend),

I would like to make a complaint following my observations at the diabetes centre, Treliske hospital, Truro. Luckily, I am not a patient with diabetes, if I was, I would not want to attend that clinic!

My friend had an appointment in afternoon , she was told by the receptionist to come in early because she needed to fill out a questionnaire, and so we arrived at the diabetes centre at approximately half an hour early.

The receptionist was okay, the nurse doing the bloods was friendly and smiling, so was a man called Chris who was a fitness person of some sort. There were various members of staff who would periodically come out of their room and walk through the waiting area, a smile might have been nice, especially for anxious patients on their first visit, but no, you wouldn’t think there was anyone sitting in the waiting area.

Time was ticking away but no one seemed to be called in to see the doctor, when she did appear, she wondered around, then went to get a bottle and filled it up from the water fountain, still not appearing hurried or anything!

Eventually a patient was called in to see her.

There appeared to be a lady who was rather breathless and she came in to enquire where she could park her car, as the car park was full up, she was told by the receptionist that she would have to park in the main hospital car park, it was obvious to me that the breathless lady would not be able to walk that far, but the lady had to explain that, to the receptionist, only to be told there is nothing else she can do. There were still a lot of people to be seen, so the car park was not going to empty any time soon! If she parked anywhere else near the building she would be clamped and probably have to a pay a £40 charge!

The breathless lady had to cancel her appointment!

An hour had passed since the scheduled appointment time and my friend had still not be seen by anyone yet, so she enquired to see if this was usual and told that it was!There was a delay due to the fact that the doctor appeared to be 45 minutes late. Then this doctor had the cheek to try to refuse to see a patient because the patient was 5 minutes late! ! Luckily this was overcome and the patient was seen.

The doctor never smiled when calling a patient in to see her. In fact I never saw her smile at all.

Another patient, who I discovered had a lot of trauma in her life in recent years, came out very distraught from seeing this doctor, and said, well, that's me, well and truly told off!

This doctor told my friend that the reason all the appointments were delayed was due to the nurse who was taking the bloods, so she didn’t even apologise for herself being so very late, just blaming it on the nurse who was one of the few who were kind, friendly and human and doing her job well!

All this time in the waiting area with no one making a statement or trying to say something to reassure people, it was all very strange.

I wondered, while I was sitting there, if it was because we were all overweight, I remember a lady doing a test on the television to see what peoples responses were to overweight people, first of all she appeared in a town as herself, nice figure, long blonde hair and reasonably attractive, people responded to her well, striking up conversation and waiters in a cafe were friendly and attentive. Next she wore a type of padded body suit, her hair and face were the same and she followed the same routine of going into town and going to the same café etc. as before, when she was slim. The response was totally different, she had odd looks, the waiter did not attend her straight away and when he did was so different in attitude toward her! She was shocked at the difference and it was a big eye opener to her.

Whilst listening to people coming out from their appointment, it appeared their treatment was extremely off-hand, demeaning and unfeeling in the extreme, to such an extent it was evoking extreme distress in some, to extreme anger in others

Surely this is not the standard of treatment that the patients should have to accept on top of their own personal difficulties. Not only was the doctors behaviour anti social, she was quite happy to push the blame for the delays onto an innocent engaging and good mannered nurse, who carried out her job with a genuine air of friendliness and efficiency.

My friend eventually got into see the doctor at approximately an hour and a half late and she too received the same unacceptable treatment by that doctor

As an overweight person myself, I know what it is like to be treated with extreme negativity, it is most definitely counter productive to any benefits that might otherwise be achieved and in the context of this clinic, I would judge it to have bordered on abuse of the patients and almost certainly the patients would have left quite dejected and traumatised by what should have been a beneficial consultation!

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