Limited communication paths re appointments etc

by JMH,

During the pandemic I have received excellent treatment for which I am very grateful and I do appreciate all the hard work that's gone into maintaining services in adverse conditions.

However, if you're considering ways forward for the future, please understand that restricting communication with patients to telephone calls/voicemail/text with no active call number for enquiries is unacceptable in the 21st century. Electronic appointment notifications should be an option for all and are an absolute necessity for your many hearing impaired patients for whom garbled messages/voicemail can be at best frustrating and at worst a disaster. This is a longstanding issue which I have raised before, has never been satisfactorily resolved (so I'm taking this opportunity to raise it again) and which has brought me to near-meltdown both during the pandemic and during cancer treatment when I nearly failed to access treatment at all because of NHS insistence on contacting me by calling my mobile phone or leaving incomprehensible or pointless telephone messages. Severely hearing-impaired, I have had to remove my mobile number from NHS records and set up complicated, inconvenient and ultimately less reliable forwarding arrangements to prevent a recurrence - even though informative texts can be invaluable and I have secure email on smartphone, pc and tablet. The priority has to be accessibility over so-called confidentiality - other health authorities routinely use electronic notification, presumably with relevant permissions in place, so it is disingenuous for mbht to plead data protection concerns.

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