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Manxman in exile

NHS appointment line?

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My turn to ask a NHS question instead of answering one. 


How is this meant to work?


My wife got a letter asking her to ring the appointment line and giving her the choice of three different hospitals for an OP appointment.  She rang them and was offered the "earliest" appointment at a hospital 25 miles away.  She turned that down (it's not urgent) and asked for an appointment at our nearest hospital which is only two miles away (and where she has previously been referred).  The "appointment" line couldn't book us an appointment there and wouldn't give us a 'phone number either (although we know it already from previous appointments).  They said they'd pass the request onto our local hospital and if we hadn't heard from them in two weeks, we should call them to chase it up (and gave us the 'phone number!).


What is the point of the "appointment" line?  I've seen some crap ideas in my 25 years in the NHS, but really...


I used to wonder at some of the posts here from people querying how the NHS works, but now I can see that from the outside it must seem bonkers.


Also, harking back to other threads, how does patient choice actually work?  (I admit ignorance).  I know my wife has been given some choice, but it's been restricted to just three local hospitals.

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Simple answer: it doesn't work.

I'm in that boat at the moment and asked to be referred to a specific hospital citing patient choice.

Been told i cannot be referred to that hospital because my case it's not serious enough.

Nice one, thanks!

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