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So many appointments, question about cancellation policies

Hi guys,

Since being diagnosed with MCTD I've been scheduled for appointment after appointment and now just got a letter saying I've got to have an ECG at the hospital that's miles away from me on a day that I totally couldn't do.

I managed to get my lung tests and my rheumy appointment swapped round on the phone, but the cardiology department were quite blase and stated they'd send another letter in the post and that was that. Problem is, my local NHS board has a two cancellations and you're kicked off the list policy - does this count as a cancellation? What if the next letter comes through and I can't make it?

I've never understood rearranging with yet ANOTHER letter with a mystery date. It's so inefficient and I'm bored with calling annoyed receptionists.

My course is very busy and I don't really have the ability to be flexible with it as attendance is very heavily monitored, and if I drop below a certain level of attendance I'll definitely have progress meetings, and may need to resit the year (not happening!!!)

What should I do, if my next appointment comes through and I can't make it? Should I just beg for rearranging the appointment on the phone? How strict is this policy?

3 Replies

AmyJ3, check your uni/college policy on long term conditions and disability. Also see what the extenuating circumstances policy is. You may already have done so but if not, please do as they should be supporting you positively to meet the demands of your course, including making allowances for essential hospital appointments. Make use of your NUS representative and the college student support officer as having an advocate in these circumstances can be useful. Good luck xx


Hey flap,

I've had a good look today through my uni's policy regarding my course and it's very vague. The only thing they've put down on paper to pen is not taking more than 10 consecutive working days off (which I did exactly that when I took the 4th-15th off in Dec when I had my first flare) before having a health meeting that might lead to a request for taking the rest of the year off or leaving the course.

I have to have a meeting with staff anyway about this, but so far there doesn't seem to be a rush. I am probably going to talk to the guy who's responsible for my health meeting and see where he stands, and then head to the SU with their thoughts.

I decided to call cardiology again today to see if I'd been booked in and if I could rearrange my appointment. A new appointment hasn't been made yet, but I was told that there was no way of them rearranging with me on the phone, and I kinda felt fobbed off. I tried to give them dates that I could make in March.

I'm quite frustrated because I just want to get on with it. :(

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You’ve already had a very helpful response. Lupus comes under the Disability Discrimination Act and this should be taken into consideration. You can’t be unfairly treated because of your lupus. I studied after my diagnosis and I produced a letter to my tutor confirming diagnoses. She was much more understanding and gave me extensions etc. You must go to these tests, don’t cancel again, it’s not worth being crossed off the patient list. Instead speak to your pastoral officer or personal tutor etc and explain. They should want to help you. Best wishes, Wendy

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