Your appointment at the hospital
Leave plenty of time to travel to the hospital and find your clinic. If you are not sure where to go please ask at the reception desk.
If you need information, a wheelchair or any other help when you arrive, please ask at the outpatient reception desk.
If you have any questions or are unsure about what to do or what is happening, please ask - staff are there to help.
Please tell the clinic receptionist if you have any hearing or sight impairment.
Delays may happen sometimes. For example, when doctors are called away on an emergency, consultations take longer than expected or emergency cases are referred. Please bear with us in these circumstances - we will be working to see you as soon as possible. Clinic staff will keep you informed about what is happening.
You will be seen either by the consultant or by one of their team.
You will be asked about your previous medical history, so it's a good idea to make short notes on information you think is helpful before you come to clinic including a list of the medication you are currently taking. This includes anything prescribed by your GP, medicines bought over the counter at a pharmacy, herbal and homeopathic remedies. You may also find it useful to make a note of questions you want to ask.
Bring a pen and paper with you - it may be useful for you to make notes about anything the doctor says in the clinic so you can be clear about what has been discussed later.
Travelling to Cambridge University Hospitals
For information about Parking, Public transport and maps of the hospital, please see the Finding us section of this site.
The Need for Chaperones
Protecting the privacy and dignity of patients is a key part of our core values at Cambridge University Hospitals (CUH).
Whether it’s during an outpatient appointment or as an inpatient, you may want to have a chaperone present during an examination or procedure and it’s our policy to do everything we can to facilitate this.
A chaperone may be a friend or family member, or perhaps your care support worker – this is known as an ‘informal chaperone’.
If there is no-one to fulfil this role for you, you can request a member of staff to accompany you – known as a formal chaperone.
In some cases it’s mandatory for the Trust to provide a formal chaperone. For example, situations involving the care and treatment of ‘adults at risk’ (Care Act 2014) where the patients may be subject to the safeguards associated with the Mental Capacity Act (2005) and ‘best interests’ decision-making processes.
If the examination is considered to be ‘intimate’ in nature, a formal chaperone is also required.
The role of the chaperone in these cases is to provide practical assistance with the examination and support the patient, family member/carer, as well as the person examining.
In a clinical emergency, where intervention is urgently required, the need for a chaperone still remains but may be waived if this is deemed to be in your best interests.
Please let us know your preferences, as someone’s understanding and expectations of ‘intimate’ examinations can vary widely according to their background and beliefs.
It is CUH’s policy that all children (under 18s) must have an adult with them at appointments, and a chaperone will be present for all examinations. Examination is performed by trained members of staff and will always be explained to you beforehand. The role of the chaperone is to provide practical assistance with the examination and to provide support to the child, family member/carer, as well as to the person examining. Older children, who are making the transition to adult services, will have a discussion about how this is managed, and the adult chaperone policy explained to them.
The majority of outpatient appointments are held during normal working hours.
There are some clinics where appointments are arranged for weekends or early evening to accommodate particular individuals/family commitments. In these cases you can expect to have the same access to chaperoning as during usual clinic times.
Concerns, comments and complaints
If you are unhappy with any aspect of your care or the service you receive in your outpatient clinic, please speak to a member of clinic staff as soon as possible.
If you are still not satisfied, please contact PALS (Patient Liaison and Advice Service) situated in the Information Centre in the hospital's main reception.