Having recently had reason to email all 409 trusts and strategic health authorities in the English NHS as part of a survey, I discovered two common, very surprising, examples of bad practice, writes Mike Simpson
One problem was the large number of trusts that simply do not have a general enquiries email address or web form. About 15-20 per cent of NHS websites list only switchboard numbers and postal addresses on their "contact us" pages. I'm no expert on disability law, but I would have thought this discriminates against hearing-impaired people.
The other extraordinary discovery was the number of respondents with either no email signature or a signature that gave only job title, not organisation. As some of these people still used pre-reconfiguration PCT email addresses, it was impossible to work out where they were emailing from. It seems obvious to me that anyone who might ever conceivably reply to an external email should have a clear, full email signature stating who they are and where they work.
Mike Simpson, website editor, NHS Networks