Ben’s long wait over his braces

Wendy Simpson with her son Ben
Wendy Simpson with her son Ben

A TEENAGER is still waiting to have his braces removed - almost two years after they were supposed to have been, his angry mother claims.

Ben Simpson, 17, of Marline Road, first had his braces fitted at the Conquest Hospital in March 2010 after waiting more than a year.

His mum Wendy said they should have been taken out at least 18 months ago but had not due to numerous cancelled appointments at the hospital’s orthodontics department.

She said: “Having received cancellation after cancellation it really has gone very much past the point of ridiculous.

“My son’s original meeting to discuss having braces was in December 2008. He was finally taken off the waiting list in November 2009 and had his brace fitted on March 23, 2010. When the braces were fitted Dr Vasey suggested that the treatment would probably take anywhere between 18 and 24 months, assuming that he didn’t break them.

“Ben has never broken them and yet it has now been 44 months since his first fitting, almost twice as long as was originally quoted. He should have had them removed at least 18 months ago.

“My son attended his appointment on November 20 and was told that it had been cancelled. This in itself is truly ironic as it was an appointment which had been put into place to cover a previous appointment which had been cancelled.

“At one point Ben was not seen by the orthodontist for five months when he is supposed to be seen every eight weeks.”

She added that Ben, who is studying A-levels at Bexhill College, has seen six different orthodontists since his treatment started due to staff leaving.

Simon Purkiss, spokesman for East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs the Conquest and Eastbourne DGH, said: “We would like to offer our sincere apologies to Ben and his mother for the service he has received over past few years. We have had significant issues with the recruitment and retention of orthodontic staff which has affected our ability to provide a consistent service. Senior clinical staff are to meet Mrs Simpson this week to discuss her concerns and review Ben’s ongoing treatment plan.”