‘Incompetent’ drug delivery service enrages NHS patients

One of the leading home healthcare providers in Britain has received a huge amount of complaints after its recurring failure to deliver vital medication on time to patients.

The NHS Choices website has been bombarded with emails from irate patients, venting their anger at Healthcare at Home, which describes itself as the UK’s leading provider of hi-tech home healthcare.

Reports have shown that delivery problems emerged after Healthcare at Home moved in March from their in-house delivery service to using an outside logistics firm, Movianto. It said the move would improve the service, but some of Movianto’s IT systems failed despite extensive testing, said Healthcare at Home.

The delivery company, which makes 4,000 “drops” a day, said the IT glitch meant Movianto “did not have full visibility over their delivery schedules”, leading to a surge of calls from 3,000 up to 9,000 a day from patients requesting delivery time updates, which have continued for longer than expected.

Dr Louise Irvine of the National Health Action party, formed to defend the NHS, said companies such as Healthcare at Home were a cause for concern.

“If this is the kind of company that the proponents of ‘care in the community’ have in mind then we should be worried. They seem to have been having problems for a while but not been able to do anything about them,” she said.

Dave Roberts, chief executive of the National Clinical Homecare Association trade group, insisted that customer satisfaction with the sector was high, at 90%, but acknowledged that this had slipped in the last six months because of Medco’s exit.

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