Information for people attending our Outpatients Departments
During your time in our Outpatient Departments we will try to ensure your visit goes smoothly and hope you find this information helpful. Our staff are happy to answer any questions you may have during your visit.
What should I do if I cannot attend or do not need my appointment?
If you cannot come to the hospital on the day of your appointment, it is important to let us know as soon as possible so that we can use your appointment to see another patient. Please call (01424) 758044 for appointments at Conquest Hospital or (01323) 414940 for appointments at Eastbourne DGH.
Before your appointment
You may wish to write down some notes on your medical history, such as dates of operations, illnesses, allergies etc. Also, if you have any queries write them down as well so you don’t forget once you are in the clinic.
Please feel free to bring a relative, friend or carer with you.
If you require any support with communication during your appointment please call the Patient Advice and Liaison Service in the first instance. For Conquest Hospital appointments please call (01424) 758090 and for Eastbourne DGH appointments call (01323) 435886.
Don’t forget to bring
- Your appointment letter/card.
- It is essential that you bring a record of any medicines you may be taking.
- If you are taking anticoagulants such as Warfarin - your record book with recent blood test results.
- Any specimens as requested in your appointment letter. Please note: If you have been asked to provide a urine specimen you should collect a container from either your GP surgery or from the local pharmacist (a jam jar etc. is not acceptable).
- Any private X-rays or medical records.
- Reading Glasses to enable you to complete forms if requested.
- If you are a diabetic, your records of blood/urine tests and insulin.
If your personal details have changed, for example name, address or GP, please bring your details with you so we might update your hospital records accordingly.
Children in outpatients
If you wish to change or feed your baby in private, please ask the clinic nurse or receptionist and a room will be made available.
When you arrive
Directions to the outpatients clinics can be obtained from the Information Desk located at both the Conquest Hospital and Eastbourne DGH in the main entrance hall on the left. Wheelchairs are available for patient use.
If you have any special needs which may affect you during your visit, for example hearing/visual impairment, please advise the receptionist in the clinic.
What will happen at the clinic
When you come to an outpatients clinic you will be under the care of the consultant named in your letter, but you may not be seen by them personally on every visit. As part of your consultation it may be necessary for you to attend other departments for further investigations. Please be prepared to wait or come back as required for further appointments.
Patients are seen in order of their appointment times. If you arrive early it is unlikely that you will be seen before the time given for your appointment. As you will appreciate, each patient requires individual attention. We try to keep an overall schedule despite the necessity of seeing additional emergency cases. If however, you have waited longer than 30 minutes, and no explanation for the delay has been given then please speak to the clinic nurse or receptionist. You may need to undress to be examined. Please wear clothing which is comfortable and easy to remove.
Sometimes medical students are present to observe in clinics as this helps with their training and development. You may be asked if you are willing to be examined by a student. If you do not wish to be seen by students you may refuse. This will not affect your treatment in any way.
Before leaving the department, please report to the receptionist to make arrangements for you next appointment, admission or discharge from the clinic. If you feel you would like further information regarding your medical condition or other health matters, please ask. We may have leaflets or telephone numbers/addresses of self-help groups that you can contact.
Travelling and assistance
Expenses - Patients who are receiving certain state benefits may be entitled to obtain reimbursement of public transport fares. You will need to produce proof of your entitlement i.e. benefit book or letter, and your travel tickets. Your clinic clerk will advise you of the claims process when you attend clinic.
Ambulance transport - Travel by hospital transport can only be authorised by your GP for your first visit if you are assessed as medically unfit to travel by public transport/private car or taxi. For subsequent appointments, the authorisation is based on the Trust Policy regarding patient transport.
Parking - The main public car park is pay-on-exit and the rest are pay-and-display. Patients and/or visitors may be taken to or collected from the main entrance at drop off points, but cars cannot wait in these areas. Discounted and concessionary ticket information is available at the site Parking Office in the main public car park.
Patient assistance - If you are a carer/escort for a patient and you require a wheelchair please ask at the hospital Information Desk. Unfortunately our receptionists and porters are unable to assist patients getting in or out of cars.
All our hospitals and their grounds are No Smoking. Patients who would like help giving up smoking can ask the clinic staff for our information leaflets which provide hints and advice.