YEP Letters January 14

Check out today's YEP letters

Friday, 18th January 2019, 12:33 pm
Updated Friday, 18th January 2019, 12:34 pm

£10m cost of missed hospital appointments

Leeds Teaching Hospitals trust has lost almost £10 million in a year due to thousands of patients not turning up to appointments figures show. Data from NHS England shows that in the 12 months to September 2018 82269 people either did not show up for an outpatient appointment at the trust or arrived too late to be seen. With the NHS struggling for funds amid budget cuts and increased demand the British Medical Association said it was crucial appointments are not wasted while the health service is “under incredible stress”. The average outpatient appointment costs the NHS £120 according to the latest resources cost data. This means that the 82269 missed sessions cost Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust around £9.87 million. We asked YEP readers for their views and here’s what some of them said on social media..

Margaret Friar

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

They should have to pay if they miss an appointment. They wouldn’t do it too often then. Should only be excused if they were admitted to hospital within 24 hours of their appointment time. There’s people out there waiting for hospital appointments but could be further up the list if people cancelled.

Cheryl Day Dockerty

You cancel an appointmen and then they knock you off the list because they say they have no record of you calling to cancel.

Or they say you have failed to turn up but yet you have never received the letter. So sometimes it’s actually them at fault and wasting money.

Pat Best

How does this cost so much? Surely the doctor and hospital is so overworked that they would just move on to the next patient? If anything it would improve on the times spent waiting to be seen for other people. Perhaps someone could explain how this missing appointments costs so much and why?

Al Percino

Let’s be clear though it’s not always the fault of the patient. I’ve been at the same practice my whole life and they recently introduced an online booking service.

I recently booked two appointments on the website but never received a reply. When I re-contacted the practice by phone I found that I had a “black mark” against my name for missing the two appointments. The reason? The receptionist answering my online query got my email address wrong.

It took ages to sort out as the receptionist denied any wrong doing. I insisted they look through her work and they found the offending reply. I wonder how often this happens?

Jill Westworth

Well maybe if hospital appointment booking service wasn’t so shambolic people would be able to rearrange and not miss them. I’ve never missed an appointment but it’s taken a lot of stress and hours on phone to ensure I don’t miss one.

Paula Kelshaw

I was told years ago by my consultant that they can book up to six patients at the same time because 50 per cent don’t turn up. But it’s a nightmare if they do, as I found out yesterday - one and a half hours delay.

Joan Wake

Disgusting, it’s same in general practice all it takes is a phone call or a text.

Lisa Ward Weir

I would never knowingly miss an appointment but last year I received a text confirming an appointment that I hadn’t made! When I phoned, they insisted it was me because it was my name and wouldn’t take no for an answer. I had to insist they cancelled it - but if they hadn’t and I hadn’t shown up, that wouldn’t have been my fault.

I think they need to acknowledge that sometimes it is their fault. I’ve turned up for an appointment at the right time to be told it was a different time. Their error, not mine.

Having said that, it doesn’t take much to cancel it. Too many people make ‘just in case’ appointments,

seen it at my surgery!

Beverly Golesworthy

It’s just manners. All people have to do is pick up a phone and tell their department they can’t make it. I’d never dream of not doing so.

Andrea Lofthouse

This is what makes the waiting lists longer. Just rudeness.

You would be mad if a tradesmen didn’t turn up for an appointment.

Lorraine Salmon

It only takes a few minutes to cancel an appointment.

Janet Taylor

Cuts both ways, most docs sharing across the private sector, I’ve had mine put forward by two months, first appointment given as this April.

Con Egan

Most of the health service costs are fixed in the short term. The buildings and most staff are permanent and it just means patients might get a few more minutes with the clinician or get seen slightly earlier.

Fayee Louise Butler

I had phone call last week saying I’d missed appointment for my baby to be turned, no appointment was ever made as we went the previous week and he had turned on his own. Poor organisation.

Vid Tka

I’m not surprised people miss their appointments! If one wants to get any appointment, one needs to wait at least three weeks to see GP and three months to see the specialist.

George R Carman

If people miss a hospital appointment, or a doctors surgery appointment, they can’t be ill! If they had to pay for an appointment, and were reimbursed after attending, there wouldn’t be as many missed.

Lee Dunwell

How about when you turn up for two appointments but the consultant doesn’t because he’s doing private work .

Let us know what you think

The Yorkshire Evening Post wants you to share your views.

Please send your letters by email to [email protected]

Please keep letters under 300 words.