"Patients' confidentiality"

Anything else?

Delighted by the medical staff,by the nurses. Utterly disgusted by the way they treat patients' confidentiality. Patients' full names are displayed on huge screens all over the place for everybody and anybody to see who are attending the cancer hospital. Reception is supposed to offer an alias,but there was a member of staff behind this desk who did not know the meaning of the word alias let alone offered one.In any case nobody ever had. What makes it even worse,if it is at all possible, is that private patients are whisked discreetly to the top floor,their confidentiality is respected.It is only us,the plebs who don't deserve it.

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Response from Uch Macmillan Cancer Centre

The Cancer Centre Management would like to apologise to the patient who wrote the above comment for not being offered an alias by the reception staff. We have undertaken actions to re-train all our reception staff in the importance of offering patients a choice of having an alias when checking in, and we will be reviewing this on regular basis to ensure this is happening. The electronic calling system in the Cancer Centre is necessary due to the volume of patients arriving to be seen each day, and the position of clinical areas across all floors of the building, to ensure that patients are notified of when the clinician is ready to see them. This also avoids clinical staff wandering around the building looking for patients, some of whom they may not have met before and therefore would not recognise. The electronic calling system we have enables clinical staff to call a patient electronically, from their clinic room - so that the patient can go straight to see their doctor or nurse. For a large number of our clinics, this system runs really well and is more efficient for both the patient and clinical teams. We hoped that by installing this new system we would improve the experience for our patients as it gives those people visiting for treatment access to all of the facilities in the building. We decided against using patient hospital or NHS numbers due to the length of numbers and the scope for confusion, and for the system to work as designed, a patient must be aware that it is them we are calling. We use clinic rooms rather than doctor or specialty in order to maintain a level of privacy around which the patient is seeing, and for what condition the patient is attending an appointment. Our Check and Track system calls patients by their name, but does not give details of the specialty they are being treated for. It is a system that is quite similar to others being used in hospitals across the country. The system allows for "alias" to be set up each day for patients that do not want their name displayed on calling screens. On arrival to the UGH Macmillan Cancer Centre, when you check in at our welcome Kiosks there is a screen which informs you that should you want an alias to report to reception to request this. If you check in via reception you should be offered the option of an alias verbally. All of our reception teams have received training in the importance of offering patients a choice of having an alias when checking in and we review this on regular basis to ensure this is happening. We have ensured that our system adheres to both the Data Protection Act and The Confidentiality NHS Code of Practice and has been approved by our Information Governance Team.

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