Central Manchester Children’s A&E

After a visit to the out of hours GP service (go to doc) I was still concerned enough to visit the children’s A&E dept at Central Manchester. It was late, it was cold, it was busy – but we were seen promptly by the triage nurse who really reassured our daughter (4 y/o). It was a case of better safe than sorry as she was pretty poorly and we left with antibiotics and peace of mind. Having a children’s A&E department is really important as a Saturday night at your typical A&E cab be pretty grim. Thanks for good all round care and service.


My miscarriage experience at Queen’s Hospital, Romford

I started to bleed at over 12 weeks pregnant. I had had fertility treatment (privately). I went to Queens who made me wait in an abandoned office room for over 5 hours before I was seen. The Doctor said all was fine after a very brief examination. I was not allowed a scan even though I asked for one many many times. I had to call King George in Seven Kings to try and get a scan (the two hospitals are aparently linked) and was told I could have one in March. Over a month later. I was allowed to come that afternoon to sit and wait for a scan – but only after begging and crying on the phone. I was sent back to Queens after being told unceremoniously the ‘product is dead’. At Queens I encountered the most unsympathetic, unhelpful people I felt I have ever met in my life.

They constantly referred to my baby as ‘the product’, and I feel they tried to bully me into having the baby removed surgically. I didn’t and in the end I had no idea what was going to happen to me. I didn’t get any emotional care, no advice on what would happen physically, and no advice as to who I should contact if I had any questions. They didn’t even give me a leaflet.

That night I had full on contractions and the baby came. I went to the hospital the next day as I was in so much pain I could hardly walk. The staff member yelled my name and walked away so quickly that I couldn’t follow. I felt I was obviously a massive inconvenience to them all. The whole experience had been so unbelievably awful that we went away to Portsmouth for the weekend. When I got there I realised I was really ill. (I have type 1 diabetes) My blood sugars were so high they wouldn’t register which is a typical sign of infection. I went to the A&E there (Queen Alexandra – I would recommend it to anyone) and the staff were absolutely lovely. The first thing they did was to give me a leaflet from the miscarriage association and tell me what was happening to my body.

They diagnosed me with a serious infection of my uterus (which could have left me infertile had it not been treated). I was admitted and had IV antibiotics and then 4 weeks of oral antibiotics, such was the seriousness of the infection.

I DID write to Queens hospital and had a letter of apology and telling me all the things they had put in place to change what had happened to me.

More recently I had another miscarriage at 7 weeks pregnant and once again went to Queens, reassured that their practice had improved significantly.

Absolutely nothing had changed in my opinion. I thought the treatment was again awful, there was still no information given to me and I still don’t feel as if my emotional needs were even considered.

I am very lucky in that I have my very supportive partner, family and friends and have medical experience as I trained as a nurse but if I hadn’t I can’t even bear to think about how I would have coped.

Extremely Unhappy

Staff telling jokes about patients in Kingston A&E

I was in A&E with what is now suspected to be diverticulitis. It felt disorganised in the extreme.

I was taken straight through without triage and put directly on a bed because I was in agonising pain. We only saw a nurse an hour and a half after i was given a bed to take blood pressure and pain killers. I had to ask for a urine sample pot because i knew they would eventually require one. Another 30 minutes passed and the same nurse came back to give me a blood test. We didn’t see a doctor for 3 hours (I was crying in pain) and only got one to my bedside because my boyfriend who had had enough, went up and demanded it from the nurses in no uncertain terms. He was so strident we had a doctor there in two minutes.

Some doctors were standing around telling jokes. The one that horrified me the most was that one doctor and one nurse were laughing about a patient because he only had one leg. I was disgusted.

A nurse said ‘I was laughing so hard seeing that stump I had to leave the room.’ A doctor laughing about a patient’s unfortunate physical condition in A&E where they are supposed to take care of you, and there are only curtains for a divide and everyone can hear everything? I just hope that man had been discharged by that point in time. Poor guy. He came into A&E for whatever his problem was and had the doctors and nurses mock and ridicule him.

In the cubicle to my left was a girl who couldn’t have been more than 20 years old who was incredibly ill. She continuously vomited for 2 hours and not one person came to see her other than a nurse to give her bowls to throw up in. She arrived at around the same time we did and as far as I saw no one even took her blood pressure or took a blood or urine sample for the first 2 hours we were there. No one put her on an IV to give her any fluids (she must have been dehydrated).

In the cubicle to my right there was a man who had sever haemorrhoidal problems (there is no privacy because only curtains divide). The doctor spoke little english, it seemed. The poor guy had to describe his symptoms six times before the doctor understood what was going on.

I have been to Kingston A&E before. The first time they were ok (with the exception of giving me antibiotics for an infection with a known resistance, I had to get a private doctor who gave me the appropriate drugs a few days later).


Disappointing care pathway at William Harvey Hospital A&E

My wife was diagnosed with TTP (Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura) sometime ago. Which is a very rare blood disorder, since then she has to be careful of contracting an infection as this could flare up the TTP. We are both very cautious of this fact. So this affects our judgment of care pathways.

My wife sometimes suffers with abscesses, and after three to four days an abscess in her groin was starting to cause considerable discomfort.

A couple of days ago, at 4.30 pm, I took my wife to Buckland Hospital and after a very short wait she was seen by one of the nurses. The nurse tested my wife’s blood pressure, heart etc then took a look at the abscess. After sometime the nurse consulted with a gynaecologist at WWH (William Harvey Hospital) in Ashford Kent. He requested my wife to go over to Ashford to see him. We were given a letter and told to hand this into the A&E reception. We then travelled the 30 min journey to WWH.

At 5.30pm, we arrived at WWH A&E , and were met with a waiting room full past capacity. With people waiting in the corridors. We handed the letter into reception.

At 8.45pm, my wife was seen by the triage nurse. She tested my wife’s blood pressure, heart etc. Then informed my wife that she would let the gynaecologist know that she was there. We both heard the telephone conversation between the nurse and gynaecologist. He informed the nurse that he was now going home. The nurse then informed us that the gynaecologist taking over will see my wife. We were then told to go back to the waiting room until we were called.

At 10pm, I started asking the receptionist when my wife would be seen. Soon after she was seen by the gynaecologist. At this point I became very concerned as the gynaecologist looked like she had not slept for a week. During my wife’s consultation we informed the consultant of my wife’s TTP and reminded her that my wife takes daily aspirin. After a short while the gynaecologist prescribed my wife some antibiotics and told her to take ibuprofen for the pain. I informed the gynaecologist that my wife takes the daily aspirin and that taking ibuprofen isn’t a good idea. She agreed, and then moments later again suggested ibuprofen for the pain.

We left WHH at around 11pm.

During this experience we saw staff that looked like walking zombies, patients that had been into A&E, discharged, and then returning. Dirty clinical areas (Blood stains on the hospital beds). Frustrated staff, and patients.

This care pathway of around 6.5 hours could have been a better experience to say the least. Not only was this exercise a waste of public money, and time. It was also frustrating for the staff and the patients. At this point I don’t blame the staff at A&E as they all looked rushed off their feet. The staff seem to do all they can to make it work, and that’s the problem. Based on our experience, this hospital gets by on the willingness of front line staff. The managers and commissioners need to look at this situation before our A&Es in East Kent hit crisis.


Losing hope in my skin treatment

I am twenty years old, and I have two beautiful children. In February this year I began to get a rash which covered my entire face and made numerous circular rashes all over my body. I got referred to the conquest after my doctor said to could be infected eczema, the hospital saw me, after leaving me looking like a monster in the waiting area for over an hour after an urgent referral.

I was told by a doctor I actually had impetigo, although was given nasal treatment and antibiotics for mrsa! Then left to wait again for these medicines in the waiting area with numerous other patients who could have contracted this disease. There was blood on one of the armchairs, and I was left for hours waiting looking the way I did and suffered humiliation and fear, my skin has always been beautiful. I eventually got home, after roughly two weeks the rash started to disappear. And then came back again with a vengeance, I rang the hospital many times as it was truly horrific. I was told the earliest “urgent appointment” was two days away. Even though I was told if my symptoms worsened they would see me straight away. I eventually saw a specialist in skin, who gave me creams and more antibiotics.

The rash continued to come back every time there was even a little improvement. I was ashamed to leave my home, my children were scared of the sight of me, and generally my rash was accompanied by fever and pain of my joints. I continued to try, I begged the skin doctor please help me. He then took a skin biopsy and told me to come off the antibiotics as they wouldn’t help me, he didn’t tell me why he was taking a biopsy. I later found out he was trying to diagnose lupus. The results came back negative, and my skin rash had cleared a little through antimalarials, so he said to make an appointment and he would see me in 5 weeks. I was so frightened of looking and feeling this way for the rest of my life, and i received in the post two weeks later for in 4 MONTHS time, I just didn’t know what to do.

My joints are continually getting worse, my skin rash comes back after every menstrual period and nobody seems to care. I have lost all faith in the NHS and I just don’t know what to do anymore


The birth of my son at South Tyneside Hospital

My son was born in this hospital 2 years ago; I have just discovered this website and felt I had to tell my story.

A week after my son was due my waters broke, I went to the delivery suite and was examined by a midwife, she said my waters had broken and I would be induced within 48 hours to prevent infection to me and the baby. She left the room and came back, said the head midwife didn’t think my waters had broke and to go home and come back on my planned day of induction if I still didn’t go into labour naturally, I never saw the head midwife she didn’t even come into the room I was in.

For a week I had regular contractions and dilated 3 cms, I was made to go in every day for a heart trace of the baby, every time they said I had a sleepy baby as his heart rate kept slowing, a consultant was called each time and said trace looks fine send her home. I would then hear the midwives whispering that they didn’t think the trace looked good.

On planned day of induction I was told there was no bed for me on the delivery suite, was taken to delivery next morning. The midwife I was given tried to break my waters, I told her they had all ready broke but she tried anyway, said oh there is no waters there!

I ended up having an emergency section, during the op the Anaesthetist was arguing with the some of the midwives telling them to shut up, they were also arguing in recovery.

The next morning I was on maternity ward, told to get up and go in shower, I was in agony and was shouted at by a midwife for been in so much pain as apparently she had a section and wasn’t in pain like I was. I was walked to shower then left. I couldn’t bend down to take surgical stockings off so had to call for help, was huffed and puffed at then left again

I was allowed home the next day, a week later after I’d had the staples removed I felt really unwell, I was shaking and my teeth were chattering, my husband said there was an awful smell and liquid was seeping out of my section wound

I was told to go to A&E. The staff on A&E were lovely. A Gynaecologist came to see me, she was also lovely, she touched my wound and it exploded. What seemed like litres and litres of puss went all over her, up the walls and on the floor, she said my abdomen had burst

I was taken back to maternity ward with my son and given 3 bags of blood and intravenous antibiotics. The next day 3 consultants and 2 junior doctors came to see me, they didn’t introduce themselves or say what they were going to do. A midwife was told to get forceps, and they whispered amongst themselves, a midwife was told to lift my stomach up (bit over overhang off pregnancy belly ) a junior doctor proceeded to rip open the part of my wound that had healed, I was offered no pain relief or told what they were doing, I was in absolute agony and screaming at them to stop touching me, they then all left the room

A few hours later a midwife and a auxiliary arrived and told me they needed to get the fluid out of me, this meant the midwife putting both of her hands on my abdomen and pushing as hard as she could, again this was extremely painful and I was crying out and asking her to stop, she didn’t, at this point my husband walked in and asked them what the hell they thought they were doing, she walked out with her head down. He went down to the staff room to ask what was going on but nobody seemed to know

After this my husband wouldn’t leave me and slept in the private room on a chair for a week, another consultant came to see me, said my wound had broken down and you could see my rectal sheath, he said my wound would have to heal from the inside out then it would have to be sown up again, a lovely midwife arranged for me to have a bottle of gas and air brought to me, I used this the 2 times a day the wound was cleaned and packed

A week later the consultant came back and said he would “fix ” me

I was taken into theatre and my wound was cleaned and repaired, I was in theatre for 4 hours

it was the worst experience of my life, the way I was treated was an utter disgrace.


Discharged from hospital at 05:00am

One night in mid December 2011 at 11pm, I had to call NHS Direct as I was having severe pains in the top half of my back, on the left side. The nurse called me straight back and as I was gasping in pain she called an ambulance for me because she was not sure if I was having a heart attack, I am 65. When the ambulance people arrived they took my stats and said even without the pain they would need to admit me to hospital as my sugar levels were through the roof. My nearest A & E was closed as the new hospital is being built at Southmead in Bristol. The ambulance crew took me to Frenchay hospital at midnight, a far distance from where I live in Bishopston, Bristol.

The nurse was excellent she looked after me and took my stats and gave me a morphine injection for the pain and carried out other investigations. I had been diagnosed by Lloyds Pharmacy in the October of 2011 as being diabetic, with very high blood pressure and cholestrol. By December my doctor was trying to get these factors under control. As it turned out I had a urinary tract infection probably due to the diabetes and the nurse gave me antibiotics for the infection.

I was completely taken by surprise when I was told at 4.30am that I could now go home. I explained that I had not brought any money with me and it was a good job, I had the presence of mind to get dressed before I left home. The nurse walked me through corridors at Frenchay to get to the ATM machine for cash for a taxi. I said to her should I take out £10.00 but she said no I would need more for the taxi, so I took out £20. On the minimum state pension this is a lot of money.

I went to the reception area and called a taxi to take me home by this time it was 5am and I just wanted to get home and sleep as I was knocked out with the morphine injectiion.My daughter was very cross that I had not called her for assistance but she has to work and needs a lot of focus in her job. I know she would have stayed with me in the hospital all night and then would have carried on to work. This is no good for her health. She could not believe that the NHS would discharge a patient at 5am in the morning who was taking into hospital because she was suspected of having a heart attack. To add I have lost 4 brothers at the ages of 60, 65, 65,and 66.

Once again thank you for raising this issue, the taxi fare home cost me £13.00, therefore I was pleased with nurse who told me to take out at least £20.00 for the fare home.


My 3 year old was discharged at 1am

My son had been unwell for a few days, suffering with nausea and high temperature. After 3 days of the same I took him to the doctor where we noticed purple spots on his neck, and a red rash covering his body. The doctor wasn’t concerned but wanted him to be checked over at hospital.

We arrived at Oldham Hospital at 6pm where they were expecting us. They took his temperature, weighed him and put “magic” cream on his hand ready for the blood tests. Eventually at 10.30pm when my son was exhausted they took his blood. 1 nurse wanted to give us a bed on the ward because it was getting late, but the doctor told her there’s no point because we’ll be going home.

At 12.30am the doctor gave us the results of the blood tests and said it has revealed there is an infection and that he suspected it was the throat. He looked in his mouth and confirmed his tonsils were swollen, therefore had tonsillitis.

Why did they not look at his throat when we got there at 6pm?

The doctor said he will prescribe antibiotics and we can go home. I explained I couldn’t park my car close to the hospital because there was a football match that evening. He wasn’t interested that I had to walk the streets alone with a 3 year old in the rain. The nurse who looked after him was great and wanted us to stay, but the rest treated us like an inconvenience. I would have been happy to leave at 6am, in the daylight.

Almost 7 hours waiting to be told it’s tonsillitis? It’s not on, and I am contacting the local MP to try and stop late night discharges.


My mother in law’s care in her final days

Hello. My mother in law was in her 60s and had smoked for many years despite having asthma and developing emphysemia. She had cut down considerably, smoking e-cigarettes instead in recent months.

She was admitted to hospital last month, with pneumonia in one lung, which had mostly cleared in about a week so they sent her back to her care home. The next day she was re-admitted because it had gone to her other lung.

She was initially on antibiotics and the strongest oxygen mask that they had, but she refused the mask after 24 hours (because it was painful and she suffered from panic attacks) and chose a less pressured one. They said it didn’t look hopeful but that they couldn’t give her a sedative to help her keep the strongest mask on because it might “send her on her way”.

The antibiotics were stopped and her fluid drip not replaced. They just gave her palliative care but her lips and mouth were very dry. She hadn’t eaten properly in 2 days. Her blood oxygen level showed above 80% but they said that there wasn’t anything more that they could do for her.

My partner stayed with his mother for 3 days watching her condition degenerate painfully. He and his relatives didn’t see a dr for 2 out of those 3 days. He was told that there were only 2 drs in the hospital for the weekend and that they were focussed on the A & E department.

She died a couple of days later. Should she have just been left to die, which is what seems to have happened?


Lodged gall stone since February 2009

I fell in on 14th February this year. By 20th February it was getting serious. I was initially treated for back spasms on 15th February, still in excruciating pain I was told I had pluracy and was given antibiotics on 17th February. I eventually saw a doctor who actually knew that it was and inflamed gallbladder on 20th February. He wanted to admit me to hospital and in hind sight maybe that is what I should have done but he gave me more antibiotics which made a difference by 21st February.

I was still in alot of pain but the inflamation was taken down by the antibiotics. My Doctor asked for an urgent scan and a number of occassions but James Cook hospital in Middlesbrough ignored his urgent messages. I eventually got a scan on 22nd March and still in excruciating pain. There is a large gall stone lodged at the entrance of the gall bladder and this is where all the pain is coming from. I cant function without painkiller and I cant sleep very well so the doctor doesnt think I am fit for work. He referred me to a specialist on 24th March by fax stating that this is an urgent case because I am still in alot of pain.

I eventually saw the specialist on 7th May. Who said what my doctor had already told me the stone and the gallbladder needs removing. I am still waiting for a date for the operation and it is now almost 5 weeks since my consultation with the specialist. I have rang the hospital on numerous occasions but when a specialists secretary goes on holiday all appoints stop till she gets back apparently. I complained that I should be seen within 18 weeks and was transferred to another specialist whos waiting list is shorter. Unfortunatley I cannot be given a date yet because she has now gone on holiday.

After complaints to the secretary and to PALS it doesnt look like I am getting anywhere or even that myself and my doctor are being listened to. It is now 4 months of sleepless nights and constant pain and no urgency from the hospital to help me out. I don’t know who to turn to now for help but I do not think that the NHS has improved in any way regarding waiting lists. If I am not back to work within the next 6 weeks I go onto half pay and who is going to compensate me for that!!!!!!! I dob’t blame anyone for taking out private health care

I only wish I had done it a long time ago but I did have faith in our health service.

I am at the end of my tether and don’t know which way to turn. I even ended up in A& E one day but was left for 6 hours before being sent home and wasnt even offered as much as a pain killer. So forgive me if I don’t applaud our great NHS or Middlesbroughs state of the art hospital. I feel totally let down.