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Health / Lerwick GP practice apologises for phone message suggesting caller is a ‘complete numpty’

Lerwick Health Centre. Photo: Shetland News
Lerwick Health Centre. Photo: Shetland News

THE TEAM at Lerwick Health Centre has apologised after an error with their phone system this morning (Tuesday) called people a “complete numpty”.

The fault stemmed from an automated test message which was accidentally left on the GP practice’s phone system.

When people pressed option three, it said: “That option is not available at this time. Can’t you listen to instructions, you complete numpty?”

The message was publicly available for several hours. The health centre recently introduced a new phone system.

In a post on Facebook, the GP practice said: “Dear patients and colleagues, if you promise not to laugh, we will tell you about a little fault that appeared on our new phone system.

“Apparently, the programmers used test messages in the development stage of the new phone system. One of these messages is an auto message in an Alexa-style voice that says, ‘this option is not available, can you not listen to instructions you numpty?!’

“Unfortunately, the message was stuck on one of our phone options for several hours this morning.

“We obviously do not support the sentiments of this message and apologies to anyone that has been caught out by the rogue message.

“We are working with BT and the IT department to have it removed although we do believe it has given a moment of light relief to many of our patients and staff and has shown us that we don’t always get it right.”