Tell us if you cannot attend your appointment

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

North Bristol NHS Trust is reminding patients of the importance of cancelling their hospital appointments if they cannot attend.

Last year more than 85,000 outpatient appointments were missed by patients at Frenchay and Southmead Hospitals.

Appointments that are missed and not cancelled by patients cost NBT hundreds of thousands of pounds a year and the appointment cannot be offered to someone else.

Forgetting about an appointment, not being able to cancel, difficulty getting time off work or worries about being admitted to hospital are some of the reasons that people do not attend.

NBT has a new website which has been designed to make it easier for patients and visitors to find out the information they need before attending hospital.

The website provides information on different ways for patients to contact the hospital in case they need to cancel their appointment.

It also includes a section on coming into hospital with a video gallery as well as information on everything you need to know about your appointment or stay.

NBT also has a dedicated appointments telephone line for patients to call.

In 2009/10:

11% of patients did not attend their new appointments at Frenchay or Southmead Hospital.

14% of people did not come to their follow up appointments.

Sue Watkinson, director of operations at NBT, said: “When people do not attend their appointment it is a lost opportunity for another patient, lost time for the doctors, nurses and the administrative team who run the clinics.

“That is why it is so important for patients to tell us if they cannot attend their appointments.

“NBT has worked hard to reduce the amount of appointments that are missed, including a survey to understand the reasons why people do not attend their appointments.

“We hope the new website will make it easier for patients to access the information they need before coming to hospital or if they want to cancel an appointment.”

Patients can find out detailed information about Frenchay and Southmead Hospitals by logging on to www.nbt.nhs.uk.

Patients who cannot attend their appointments can email outpatientsappointments@nbt.nhs.uk or call the appointments line on 0117 323 5105 and press option 3.