Gransnet forums


Hospital assumes, what?

(96 Posts)
tanith Tue 25-Jun-19 17:57:42

Got e-mail today from the hospital informing of an app with a surgery team about my Carpal Tunnel in October not too long to wait.
Good good good, then I read the bottom of the message.

You will need to bring with you to your app:

- Any medication or tablets you take.
- Reading glasses if you wear them.
-A friend or relative who knows you well , as the doctor may need to ask them to help describe the symptoms you have.

Why do they assume anyone my age 70 I need someone to help describe my symptoms?

SirChenjin Tue 25-Jun-19 18:06:09

I think that’s a fairly standard letter isn’t it? If you give them a call they’ll be able to confirm smile

crazyH Tue 25-Jun-19 18:14:45

Yes, standard letter....

ninathenana Tue 25-Jun-19 18:16:19

Yes, it's standard. I had the same letter last week.

suziewoozie Tue 25-Jun-19 18:19:30

I think the first two on the list are ok but the third one about bringing someone could be better worded

Tedber Tue 25-Jun-19 18:49:09

Yes...fairly standard - nothing to get offended about t.b.h.

I always think it is better to take someone with you to appointments, if you can, on the basis that four ears are better than two! Whatever is easy to 'forget' what has actually been said. My daughters always ask me to accompany them for an appointment and their version and mine can be totally different - simply because when you are the patient, you may get flustered with it all!

Not compulsory though but don't think they mean to be insulting in any way. Some will need and some won't...simples!

suziewoozie Tue 25-Jun-19 18:56:20

I agree about taking someone with you as a general rule but still think it could be worded better - eg you might find it helpful to bring a friend etc etc

watermeadow Tue 25-Jun-19 19:04:44

I’d confirm the appointment and write,
“I shall be attending on my own as I am not half-witted nor ga-ga, can catch a bus to the hospital and talk intelligently to the medical team. I could also compose standard e mails for you which do not cause offence.”

tanith Tue 25-Jun-19 19:19:24

Thanks everyone I shall be going alone
2 buses and the tube but I'll manage grin

M0nica Tue 25-Jun-19 19:23:07

watermeadow I so absolutely agree with you. I attend all medical appointments, thankfully few and far between. on my own and will continue to do so.

Marydoll Tue 25-Jun-19 19:33:28

On my recent admission to A&E a few months ago, I was asked "Did I need cot sides on my bed" and could I give them information about my "care package". I was 63 at the time! angry. They then ignored me and asked my husband if he was my carer.

I was not amused and explained that my "care package" comprised childminding my three year old grandaughter and looking after my adult family. I cared for them, rather than the other way around. I was fuming at what I perceived as ageism.
What annoyed me even more was medics kept saying, "people your age", as if I was past it.
The whole scenario was repeated when I was admitted to the ward.

SueDonim Tue 25-Jun-19 19:52:13

A friend wished she had had someone with her at one appointment. She thought she was going for a routine follow up appointment so was utterly side-swiped when told she had cancer.

She had to undergo more tests immediately and in the turmoil she completely forgot that she had planned to take her dog for a walk after what she thought would be a short appointment. Tragically, her dog had died of heatstroke by the time she remembered him. sad That might have been avoided if she'd been accompanied.

Tedber Tue 25-Jun-19 20:00:35

Good on you Watermeadow and MOnica but...why the need to be so aggressive? It is a standard letter! If you want personally directed letters then don't go NHS is all I can say. Honestly..cannot understand why people get so uptight about these sort of things. It isn't meant as a personal slight. Common sense must be implemented surely? One day, you might just NOT be able to go alone so think of the people that may not be so able as yourselves.

SirChenjin Tue 25-Jun-19 20:18:26

Agree Tedber

notanan2 Tue 25-Jun-19 20:32:59

marydoll every one of every age is asked if they want the cot sides up or down. People who are used to big double beds often prefer them up on narrow trollies and hospital beds.

OP its standard. The say thats why but its really incase its not great news

Do posters seriously think that their appointment letters are individually composed with them in particular in mind? grin They are standard templates!

tanith Tue 25-Jun-19 20:38:42

I do not ever remember reading that on any previous letters to be honest but if it's standard then it's understandable I guess.

M0nica Tue 25-Jun-19 21:06:36

Tedber, not at all aggressive. I have never received such a letter. I had a brief, very brief, stay in hospital about 15 years ago and they couldn't understand how I could not already be on some kind of medication. I am still not on any medication.

I doubt any of us think these letters are personal, in a way that is what is so bad. It is the assumptions that all people above a certain age will conform to some standard stereotype that is so annoying and the letter could just as easily say A friend or relative who knows you well, if you think they could help you describe your symptoms and problems.

When DH was in agonising pain from a trapped nerve, I did go to the doctor with him, because until he was finally prescribed effective painkillers, he was in too much pain to answer questions. After that he went on his own.

Charleygirl5 Tue 25-Jun-19 21:07:32

tanith I have never in my life been asked to bring somebody else with me. The other stuff is usually but not always requested.

Grannynise Tue 25-Jun-19 21:14:31

I'm sure that's been added because you've reached some mythical magic age, Tanith. And I'm quite positive you'll be fine on your own, after all you know exactly what's wrong.

suziewoozie Tue 25-Jun-19 21:18:43

I don’t think it’s a Badge of honour to go on your own - it all depends what the appointment is for. If it’s getting back diagnostic results for possible cancer and discussing treatment options, I’d understand anyone wanting to have someone with them. It’s the way this is written as an order that irritates me

Tedber Tue 25-Jun-19 22:07:03

Yes suziewoozie but isn't there a sense of being pernickety for the sake of it? For most people they would just be happy to get the bloomin appointment bahaha.

An order? Nah...don't think so! Just a generic letter which you can take or leave as you deem fit.

Yes.... agree it could have said IF you require etc etc but in the grand scale of things....who cares? Get to your appointment, be thankful you are being seen (with or without company) Instead of worrying about what a letter says, be grateful you are getting treated.

Sarcastic comments like watermeadow suggested just show yourselves up t.b.h. and you agreed with her!

Tedber Tue 25-Jun-19 22:08:39

Sorry Suzie...wasn't you agreed with her!

Marydoll Tue 25-Jun-19 22:16:22

It wasn' t so much the question about the cot sides that annoyed me, it was the assumption ( due to my age?) that my husband was my carer and I was in my dotage, unable to speak for myself.
The doctor who examined me was surprised that I knew more about the medication, which caused the severe allergic reaction and its side effects than she did.
I explained that the medication had a long half life even after stopping it and asked if she was aware of this. She said that she wished more patients were as sharp as I was.
My husband hadn't a clue about this, so he wouldn't have been much help.

I think what I'm trying to say in a cack handed way, is that there are better ways of communicating with patients and perhaps these appointment letter should be rephrased.

mumofmadboys Wed 26-Jun-19 00:28:52

Sometimes it is useful to have someone with a patient if they have suffered any neurological symptoms such as a fit or an absence of some kind. The patient doesn't know quite what has happened and a relative/ friend may give a better picture. Also for any kind of intermittent confusion.

ninathenana Wed 26-Jun-19 07:11:51

When I had my minor surgery last week DD dropped me at the hospital door at 6.30 and went off to work. Returning to collect me at 3pm.
When I booked in the receptionist asked in a surprised tone if I was alone. Erm, yes, why not.
Everyone else in the waiting area had someone with them and in a couple of cases two people.