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Right Arrow Please think of others and tell us if you cannot make your appointment
10 July 2006 at 10:32

Between April 2005 and March 2006, the Trust made 58,524 new outpatient appointments and 158,203 follow-up appointments. Unfortunately, on 24,274 occasions patients chose not to turn up for their appointment without telling us. As a result, 24,274 appointments that could have been offered to other patients were wasted and those patients had to wait longer than they needed to see a doctor.

Geraldine Boocock, Medical Director commented, "It is a great pity when patients do not tell us they cannot come to an appointment, as it is also inconsiderate to other patients as we could offer them the appointment instead. Yes, it does cost money, which is obviously a waste, but for us the more important issue is that the appointments could be offered to other patients. We are doing all we can to address this problem including introducing a direct phone line and e-mail address for people to change or cancel appointments. We are also looking at the possible use of text messaging to remind patients of outpatient appointments. So please, do what you can and just pick up the phone or drop us an e-mail.”

The direct phone number for people to call to cancel or change an appointment is 01695 656680.  We have just invested in a queuing system whereby if there are more than 5 in the queue, you have the option to leave a message and 'phone number and we will call you back.
The e-mail address is

We have a partial booking system here where patients can phone and they are offered a number of possible dates from which they can choose an appointment. We have also started to roll out the Choose and Book programme, with certain specialties and certain GP practices, where patients can book their appointment when they see their GP. This will continue to be rolled out over the coming months. 

Issued by Matthew King, Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust.

Enquiries to: Matthew King Tel: 01704 704714