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Appointment confirmations fro hospitals

(8 Posts)
GlitteryShoes Fri 22-Apr-16 19:43:27

AIBU. I totally get that they want to remind people about appointments, but you would think there could be flexibility with how they do it! My son is 21 and has a head injury which means he can't remember things or process information very easily, he definitely can't look at a calendar and confirm appointments whole on the phone ( partly because both his arms are in plaster and he has severed a nerve in his dominant hand and partly because of the head injury). Most weeks he has 3-4 appointments for physio, rehab etc, and pretty much every night we get called about whether he is going to attend X appointment. He can't speak to them but they won't give me any info about each appointment. I have to run through every appointment next week, confirm he will attend each one and then they will accept it but they will never tell me which one was the one they were trying to confirm. If I don't run through it, I get automated calls every 30 mins asking me to confirm. It's driving me crazy, and then my son gets upset because he is confused after listening to me. I have asked if I can be made party to his appointments but even when it's noted at hospital, it doesn't seem to affect the automated system.

I can't imagine how hard it must be for people with mental health issues/ dementia who don't have someone living with them

Actually IABU - the NHS had been amazing, and I know we are very lucky. It's just a minor inconvenience, but it adds a fair bit of drama every evening.

Mummyme1987 Fri 22-Apr-16 19:58:19

Get a power of attorney and then tell them you have it. We have this with my daughter too. She has asd. It's annoying. They text us too.

bigbluebus Fri 22-Apr-16 20:08:10

My adult DD has severe physical and mental impairments so has a fair few hospital appointments. They have my mobile number on their system and when they ring for appointment confirmations with their automated system the 1st question is "Is this the phone number for smallbluebus" so I press 1 for YES, then they ask "Are we speaking to smallbluebus" so I press 1 for YES, then I get the appointment details and confirm she will be attending. Job done. The 1st time they used this system it caught me out as I pressed 2 for NO on the 2nd question - it then said "we will call back later and see if smallbluebus is available". The next time they rang, I lied.

Is it an automated system your hospital are using or a real person?

I can understand why they do this to save missed appointments, but I was once in New York when they rang my number to confirm an appointment the following week - it was the middle of the night in NY. I was not impressed at being woken in the middle of the night for that!

GlitteryShoes Fri 22-Apr-16 20:19:27

The first call is from s person and then it switches to automated calls. I can't get power of attorney as its a recent injury that may improve, and he is also very reluctant, I think he is feeling fairly powerless as it is, and he can still make decisions, he just needs time, which an automated phone doesn't give. I might ask about text messages though.

bigbluebus Fri 22-Apr-16 20:28:36

At our hospital you can opt out of the automated system - I was once told this by the receptonist at one of the clinics DD attended when I commented on how complicated some people must find it. Assuming you are actually receiving details of the appointment by other means, would this be an option for you? Of course you run the risk of missing an appointment if you either haven't had the letter in the post or have forgotten to write it on the calendar.

GlitteryShoes Fri 22-Apr-16 20:38:31

I could try to find out about opting out. The appointments are all regular so no risk of missing them, and the current system won't share any info so if I didn't know about an appointment they wouldn't tell me anyway!

CantChoose Fri 22-Apr-16 20:51:19

Surely he can just consent to information-sharing rather than a full-on Power of Attorney for health? We do this often at my hospital, I assumed it was the same everywhere but maybe it's nit as widespread as I thought!

GlitteryShoes Fri 22-Apr-16 21:03:51

We have discussed it at the hospital and if I phone up they let me change appointments, ask questions etc, it's just the automated/ appointment service that won't. Annoyingly, that's the bit he can't do at all because answering his date of birth or typing it into s phone is impossible for him.

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