My life was on hold as I waited for surgery
A granddad said his life was on hold after he waited seven months for vital knee surgery despite being promised to be seen within 12 weeks.
The 70-year-old this week told the Lennox Herald how he couldn’t make plans to see his grandchildren who stay in Ireland for fear of missing his appointment or having to cancel his trip at the last minute.
When it was first confirmed he would be put forward for a knee replacement last August, the Cardross man was sent a leaflet from the health board saying the operation would be carried out within 12 weeks.
But he was left waiting until late last month for the surgery to actually take place.The pensioner told us:“I got confirmation I was on the waiting list on August 4, 2016.When they send you this, they also send you a leaflet from NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde which gives you a 12-week guarantee to get this operation done. Unfortunately I believed that.”
In mid-October the patient was sent another letter explaining that the 12-week timeframe wouldn’t be met which led to him calling up the surgeon’s secretary to find out more.
He continued:“She couldn’t give me any information.That was in the middle to the end of October.
“My daughter and grandchildren stay in the Republic of Ireland. My wife and I go to visit them. I thought ’I don’t want to make arrangements and then have to go to hospital’. I only got my date on January 26 and the operation was done on February 24.”
Dumbarton MSP Jackie Baillie stepped in to help a number of local people across Dumbarton, theVale and Helensburgh areas being made to wait.
She said:“I have met numerous patients who have been waiting months longer than they should have for knee, hip and back operations.
“Many of these patients have been unable to go about their daily lives due to the severe pain they have been living with for months. It is time for the health secretary to get a grip on waiting times.”
The chief executive of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Robert Calderwood, confirmed that the orthopaedic service is“currently under significant pressure due to an increased demand for emergency and elective surgery.”
A spokesman for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde said: “Unfortunately a number of orthopaedics patients have waited longer than we would like and we apologise for this.”
A Scottish Government spokesman confirmed an additional £10million will be available to address outpatient waiting times this year.
He added:“We are committed to ensuring all patients have swift access to the full range of services they need.”