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NHS England: A Call to Action
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18 Weeks Waiting Time Been and Gone

I was sent to see a specialist back in July. I had several types of treatment and it was decided I needed an operation. I went to see the surgeon on 5/11/15 who advised it would be done within 18 weeks. Now I'm not stupid enough to think it would be done within this time but I was a little concerned I hadn't heard anything. My 18 weeks was up last Thursday (10/03/16) I contacted the appointments dept at the hospital who informed me that my op probably wouldn't happen until May but they really couldn't actually tell me if it would even happen then. I wrote to PALS who basically said whilst they understand my frustration if there were no beds there was nothing they could do and patient safety is paramount.

Now .... I completely understand and not really one to get aggravated but I have ended up in A & E on 3 occasions and have had to cut down my hours at work and am now getting a little irritated.

Is there anything I can do. Any help would be appreciated. Many Thanks x

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5 Replies

Speak with Consultant's secretary - telephone hospital and ask for her/him. Tell them that the delay has caused three A&E visits and that you have had to cut down your hours of work and ask to be seen sooner.

Alternatively, see your GP and get him/her to do it - personally I'd do it myself.

I expect they will blame the BMA's strike; if so you could ultimately go to the press if the above doesn't work - BMA needs some bad press IMO.

Don't feel guilty about the strike causing delays and you pushing for an earlier date - the strike is not your doing and you have a need.

Things are happening which are beyond your control because of the junior doctors series of strikes.

All operations carry risk. The risk being the rest of your life is ruined and you lose your ability to work. You want to minimise risk. Pushing to have an operation being done when the surgeon has been overworked and overstressed increases the risk of mistakes taking place.

Cannot give any advice other than be aware of the problems of staff shortages due to industrial action which puts people under pressure.

Hope this helps


Asking for the operation to be brought forward does not put the surgeon underpressure, s/he moves the OP further up her/his list because things have changed since s/he last saw the OP and the OP now has a greater need and therefore a greater priority than others.

Don't forget almost 50% of junior doctors are still working, the last I heard.

Get your Gp to push for another consultation with the consultant so that your greater need is seen and you can tell how your life has deteriorated with this extra wait. 

\\\the thousands of operations delayed because of the junior doctors strikes has made this so much worse for you. They don't believe that they should be psid the sameper hour as Monday to Friday on Saturdays, and on Victoria Derbyshire one said "but it is the weekend.!" Other comentators said so many epole work on Saurdays and do not expect to be paid more." They were taken aback. I believe the junior doctors are so out of touch with the reak world, more than someone could accuse polititions of.

I have run out of any sympathry for them as their contract deal is not bad at all. I am ashamed of them.

Jermey Hunt is my MP and despite all the agro you hear he is has got involved in helping so many people here in different ways. You could try copying him into an email. Good luck and I do hope you are seen very soon.

You have a legal right to be treated within 18 weeks from referral to treatment.  By your description, you have had some form of treatment which will have stopped the original 18 week "clock", but a new plan of action was agreed.  This should start a new "clock" and your treatment should start within 18 weeks of agreeing the new treatment plan. As long as you have not chosen to delay the surgery date, did not attend any appointments, or there are clinical reasons not to continue within 18 weeks then you have a legal right to ask to change provider.

This can be to any provider of NHS services (whether based in an NHS Trust or in the private sector) as long as it is clinically appropriate and they can treat you sooner than your current provider.  It is your local Clinical Commissioning Group's responsibility to offer you this.

You can find your local Clinical Commissioning Group and their contact details on NHS Choices at nhs.uk/Service-Search/Clini...

Your rights (plus details on where they do not apply) are set out in the 'Choice Framework' available at the Department of Health website: gov.uk/government/publicati...

Best wishes for your pending surgery.

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