We are constantly hearing reports of inadequacies, faults and delays in the NHS and so I should like to describe a very positive and indeed inspiring experience at Worthing Hospital.
Following a routine mammogram I received a letter recalling me for further tests. As many women will know, this is quite a worrying time.
I was given an appointment for less than a week after receipt of the letter and telephoned the specialist nurse for more information.
She was extremely helpful, easing my anxiety without giving me platitudes.
I duly attended my appointment yesterday accompanied by a dear friend.
The staff from the receptionist and radiographer through to the nurses and doctor were all kind, courteous and efficient. I was never left alone and never kept waiting.
I was very fortunate in that my problem was very minor and was treated there and then. However, I have heard from others, whose results were not so good, that their treatment has been amazing, prompt and well-explained.
Despite major advances in treatment and huge increases in survival rate, it is still very frightening to face the prospect of breast cancer. The way patients are treated makes an amazing difference and I cannot praise Dr Shepherd and his team enough.
My friend who accompanied me is slightly past the age for automatic invitation for routine mammograms. After our visit yesterday she was so impressed that she has booked in for a requested test which is available to women up to 75 years of age.
I know that I was lucky that my results were good yesterday but I came away reassured that if at any time in the future I am not so lucky I am fortunate to live in the Worthing area where there is such a wonderful unit. Thank you, one and all.