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Arthritis Consultation

19 September 2012

Dear Mr Wilson

Re: Arthritis Consultation

I am writing to complain about the standard of care I have received recently under NHS Fife.

I was referred in May 12 because of successive flare-ups of pain and stiffness in my joints, particularly my shoulders, by my GP and received a consultant appointment very promptly on 10th May with Dr X in the Adamson, Cupar. She postulated that it could be several different conditions and sent me for an MRI of my lower back to rule out ankylosing spondylitis, which also was very prompt (14th June). The radiographer told me that the consultant would summon me back to discuss the results.

All okay so far, but this is where it went a little off the rails. I received a letter from radiology saying that there were essentially no problems in my lower back - no surprise there as I’ve actually had no problems in my spine. I then received appointment letters to see a podiatrist - I wasn’t aware there was anything wrong with my feet!? And also with a practice nurse to discuss how to best manage my condition – a condition for which, to my knowledge, nobody has actually made a diagnosis so far!

I may then have walked into the trap of cancelling those (what seemed like) pointless appointments, as they would have been a waste of everyone’s time and your resources. But subsequently, it appears I have now been completely struck off the system. Despite ongoing pain, particularly in my shoulder, and three separate telephone calls to ask about the promised follow up with the consultant, in order to find out exactly what is going on, NHS Fife will not respond to me or take any action.

It makes me wonder whether sending patients on a wild goose chase round the system is your latest strategic initiative to reduce waiting lists? If so, it is certainly a pretty effective tactic although, not exactly acting in the best interests of the patient.

I trust you can display the leadership qualities which the £120,000 salary derived from my taxes obviously qualifies you for, and resolve this matter promptly and effectively.

Yours sincerely,

Patient X

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