Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hospital Tales Part 3

Back to the hospital for another scan today. Same hospital; different department. Last week I wrote about the problems with administration which I encountered. Over the weekend I went for a drink with some friends, a group which included one who works for the NHS. "How do you find the administration in your hospital?" I asked her, explaining that at the hospital I go to I had found it lacking. "Appalling" she replied cheerfully, considering the wine list in the bar that we were in. "Last week", she continued, pointing to a bottle, "we had a live donor op. You know, kidney passing from mother to daughter, or whatever". I nodded, both in agreement to the wine and also concurring that I was following her story. "Well, the donor was on the table in theatre when suddenly someone realised that the donee had a temperature and was still on the ward". She ordered the bottle and the bar man handed me the glasses, "someone had forgotten to write it down and pass on the message". We went to sit down and she ended, "still, at least they hadn't started cutting" and poured the wine.

So it was with some surprise that I found myself back on the street a mere 10 minutes after the scheduled time for my scan. Granted, the department was much larger than the one I visited last week, being an entire outpatients department rather than simply a clinic, with a much more ordered reception desk, queuing system, note system. In fact, the whole system seemed far superior to that of the clinic upstairs, perhaps simply because these staff appeared familiar with theirs and knew (or appeared at the very least) what was going on. Anyway, I arrived with ten minutes to spare, presented my letter, my notes were found and details checked. I had just sat down to read whilst waiting and I was called in. It was over and done with in ten minutes and I was free to leave. I was so surprised I didn't know what to do with myself.

So I called a friend who works from home and went to his house and am sitting drinking tea, playing with his cats and waiting for him to finish work so we can go and watch another friend's band this evening.

1 comment:

James said...

Hurrah for efficiency.

I guess that is partly the problem with the NHS, there isn't a big enough penalty for inefficiency or a big enough reward for efficiency.

Good luck with the scans.