Moving to Sandbach, Cheshire - please recommend hospital(s) with good Rheumatology Team for Rheumatoid Arthritis treatment

Hi All,

My husband and I are moving from Hampshire to Sandbach in Cheshire. I've not had a particularly great experience with my current hospital since being diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in December 2015, aged 40. My diagnosing Rheumatologist left a month after my diagnosis, my 2nd Rheumatologist is on maternity leave and another Rheumatologist from the team had to see myself and others as extra patients and was rude, confusing and dismissive throughout the appointment. I've had a lot of frustrations, a lot of tears, a lot of anxiety and of course with RA I've had a lot of pain.

I am now rather fearful and anxious about selecting a new hospital to go to when we move later this month/early June. I am worried about ending up with another Rheumatologist who isn't patient and understanding or a Rheumy Nurse who won't listen and communicate the correct details to the consultant to ensure I get good care and treatment.

I would be very grateful of your recommendations for good/great/amazing/wonderful(!) Rheumatology teams in hospitals near to Sandbach, Cheshire. I am also prepared to travel in order to get a great Rheumatology team.

Also, what are your thoughts and experiences of the Rheumatology teams at Leighton Hospital, Countess Of Chester Hospital, Congleton War Memorial Hospital, Macclesfield District General Hospital, Wythenshawe Hospital, Warrington Hospital, or hospitals in Staffordshire?

Thank you so much for your help and advice!

10 Replies

  • Hi,

    I'm not sure how much help this will be as I've only recently been diagnosed but I'm being seen at Hayward Hospital in Stoke which is about 25-30 minutes away from Sandbach.

    I've seen two different consultants, one when first referred who ordered more tests and followed these up and then rang me with the results, and a second who further discussed the diagnosis and medications. I'm not sure if I'll be seeing the same person in future. I've had one appt with the nurse who was nice enough but seemed quite rushed. I've also contacted their arthritis helpline and spoke to a different nurse who was lovely, kind and listened. I haven't had a bad experience yet. In both consultant appts I felt listened too, I didn't feel rushed and they answered any questions I had. So I can only give my experience so far but on the whole positive. I think they are quite busy so initially I had a 2 month wait for the first appt but managed to get a cancellation a month earlier. I also had a long wait for an ultrasound and was supposed to see the nurse in 2 weeks but it ended up being 4 (although Easter was in the middle) and this time I've got my next appt at the right time. The booking staff were very accommodating and didn't mind me ringing up to see if there were earlier appts available.

    Hope that helps


  • I go to the countless of Chester. They have a great team I've been going there for 17 yrs. Leighton hospital don't have a good reputation for rheumatology I'm afraid. Hope that helps. X

  • Sorry forgot to say the consultant is Dr Teresa Barnes. She is a lovely lady and knows what she is talking about

  • Hi, I'm seen at The Haywood as well and to be fair they have been fantastic with me as well. Can't recommend it enough!!

  • Hi Woodstar, nice to see someone else has found the Haywood good and to know there are some other locals on here! Xx

  • Hi we moved from Chester to Nantwich just over 2 yrs ago. Stayed with rheumatology team in Chester as I was being monitored just fine. So glad I did now have been to leighton for appts like scans & bloods. It's awful there. Staff are very rude & dismissive. Have also heard from others that rheumatology clinic is very understaffed & hard to get appts. If you can get with the Chester team I would because I believe they now have a satellite clinic at Tarporley.

    We are now moving back to Chester for a few different reasons but that is on the list.

    Hope this helps


  • Yea I also see Dr Barnes. She is the best

  • Hi All :)

    Thanks so much for your comments, really helpful and puts my mind at ease. I think I will ask to be referred to The Countess as I actually grew up in Chester, lived in Upton over the road from it and still have family there.

    As a follow-up question - have any of you had experience of a pain management clinic please? My Rheumy Nurse told me I needed to see the pain mgt clinic back in February. After 12 weeks of going round in circles with my Rheum Team and GP each saying the other had to refer me and me banging my head against the wall, I've just managed to get a referral to the pain mgt clinic for later this month. Hooray!!! I am so relieved as I have constant hand pain 24/7. Is there a pain mgt clinic at The Countess please so I can carry my referral over? Thanks!

  • I don't think there is one at the countess, the nearest one to it is clatterbridge hospital , hope that helps

  • Thank you!

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