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Copyright © 2017 by Jo Barlow
Health Ombudsman Complaint
Is this service honestly here for the patient?
Today I have finally written a formal complaint against the official reply letter I received from the health ombudsman about my initial concern and complaint that my GP’s failed to diagnose my tumour. The ombudsman apparently found there was no wrongdoing-
Sorry it has taken me so long to reply to your letter, but my husband called you shortly after we received your final report that we were totally dissatisfied and disgusted with. We were then somewhat in shock to realise that YOU gave me the ‘summary points’ as to what you would review and these very same summary points were ONLY what could be taken into account for you to review after this, ignoring my main complaint points against Giggs Hill surgery. It basically feels like a total farce and a waste of both of our time.
I have since felt rather disheartened to start again with the complaint, as each time I need to re-
I am not also sure why I, as a patient, should be researching things like NICE guidelines on what testing should be done for the symptoms I had? Surely that should be what the health ombudsman should be doing for me… not seemingly wanting me to give all the information until you can no longer deny that the GPs made mistakes!
We both feel it needs to be made FAR clearer when you are coming up with the summary that these will be the ONLY points on which the complaint can be addressed. At no point during the phone conversations I had with your staff was I made aware of this. If I was aware I would NOT have agreed to only having the 6 summary points, would have clarified what can be covered under each point, plus would have asked for these summary points to have been in writing so I could digest them better and ask my husband for support. For example under point 1 ‘Mrs Barlow complains about the care and treatment provided by Glenlyn medical centre from January – March 2016’, I assumed that this would include ALL of the meetings, treatments, referrals, drugs offered, time it takes to book appointments etc that I had with Glenlyn between these dates-
I have also had 3 different people who dealt with my case-
(I have added the summary points and reviewed them all-
Despite your previous finding that the only mistake that Glenlyn had was not to remove my staples when I asked, please read all the info above and tell me to my face that there were no other mistakes made?
From what I was told by the neurology staff at St Georges Hospital, when they brought my already urgent operation date forward a week due to my increasing brain swelling and fluid, I would be likely to have a stroke within a couple of weeks if I didn’t have urgent surgery. Several of the staff agreed that having a private scan probably saved me from that, or even death and expressed their concern and shock as to how my symptoms got ignored. Maybe I didn’t look ‘ill enough’ as I know one registrar expressed surprise at how well I looked after seeing my scan.
Yet from the mistakes by my GP’s on the NHS I still wouldn’t have even seen the neurologist by the time I had surgery. Even if they did then offer scans and surgery that same day it would have still put me in this dangerous life threatening position! How can Glenlyn say that they did nothing wrong when basically it boils down to the fact that if we hadn’t paid privately I could well have had a severe life changing consequence -
That is what this case boils down to-
…it actually scares me. How many people have died because they were ignored like this when they saw their GP with similar symptoms of a brain tumour? I was ‘lucky’ as brain tumours go as mine was benign and this 3 month delay didn’t give cancer a chance to become untreatable with surgery. Mine was able to be cut away. Others are not so lucky as I want ALL GPs to understand what the symptoms are for brain tumours, so they don’t ignore or treat any more brain tumour patients as a hypochondriac with a headache.