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Sunshine and Clouds

Monday, 7 February 2011

NHS and efficiency - should they be such strange bedfellows? Or why the NHS shoots itself in the foot

So, you have gone to your G.P as something isn't right; he refers you to the surgeon, and gets on with organising an ultrasound. The sharp thing about having the ultrasound is that it'll be done quite quickly but it doesn't really help find out what is wrong. You really need a MRI scan - but the G.P. cannot sanction this from their desk - the ultrasound people can book one - they see that they haven't helped - so you have to wait for the MRI appointment. Of course this doesn't account for an essentially wasted ultrasound and the fuss and car parking charges involved for you.
You still don't feel great, and the waiting continues. Where is that letter? Can't they send an email? Or text?
In the meantime the well meaning minxes at the  local hospital appointment bureau keep phoning to arrange and change the appointment with the surgeon. Then they call to remind you the appointment is coming up.
At no time despite the reasonable request (based on a not unreasonable assumption) can they help with telling you when the MRI scan might be - that's a whole different appointment system. Despite them having access to at least some of your record electronically they cannot sort that out.
It's no wonder politicians see waste in the NHS - and I'm a supporter, but it doesn't do itself any favours some days.

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