Thursday, 9 October 2014

Southmead Hospital

Had to go to Bristol's new "superhospital", Southmead, yesterday for No.1 Son to have some adjustment on his braces at the maxillofacial unit.

For a start, when building a superhospital it's advisable to have sufficient car-parking facilities for the expected number of visitors. Cars were queuing up to park in the woefully inadequate car-parks - and doubtless patients were missing appointments as a consequence. The NHS should perhaps have consulted Tesco on how to construct a multi-storey car-park. Added to which, the minimum fee is £3 (not that I even got to pay it). The fee was £1 at Frenchay. I simply did what many other visitors did and double parked while my son ventured into the hospital on his own - if you're both the patient and driver, you can't do that.

Secondly, I question the wisdom of having so many departments in a single building. While my son was in the humungous Brunel Building the fire alarm went off and the whole building had to be evacuated. At the old Frenchay Hospital, departments are scattered around a motley agglomeration of buildings, whereby if there's an emergency in one of them, the rest can keep working.

I simply left without my son achieving the appointment and refuse to ever go back to Southmead, unless in an ambulance.

I have enormous respect for the people who work at the front line in the NHS, but they are let down by inadequate planning. Even the consultant dentists don't like the place - they have to park at Frenchay and get bussed in, meaning longer working days.

See here for further info.

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