Reduced weekend service

My father – who is in the late stages of lung cancer that has spread through his body – was recently admitted to the Carlton/Coleby ward with a suspected respiratory problem.

He has been suffering a lot of pain in recent weeks and was prescribed decently sized doses of strong painkillers, which were just about coping with the pain. Then on admittance to the Carlton/Coleby ward, the pain management team lowered his dosage. He suffered a long drawn out night of high pain on the Friday night of his admittance, continuing through the Saturday morning.

He was clearly suffering when I went to see him Saturday afternoon. We asked the nurse about getting a higher dosage of pain relief, who initially said that this wasn’t possible. After a bit of persistence, it transpired we could call the doctor, who would be able to assess and potentially prescribe a higher dosage. The nurse told us the doctor would be around in “5 – 10 minutes”.

Minutes came and went, while my father continued to suffer – reduced to tears because of the pain. Eventually, over two hours after initially being called, the doctor arrived. After a couple of questions, the doctor was then distracted and disappeared for 10 minutes. After re-appearing and asking a few more questions, she agreed to increase his pain relief medication, although I wasn’t instilled with a high confidence in this assessment. When I left the hospital, almost 3 hours after the initial call to the doctor, he still hadn’t been given his new medication.

During this whole process, it was revealed to us that a “reduced service” runs at the weekends. In this case, from 24 doctors serving up to 168 patients during the week, to just 1 doctor at the weekend. This is obviously a drastic reduction, and is unacceptable. It’s not just a reduced service, it’s pretty much non-existent. My father was essentially forced through hours and hours of pain because the pain management team under-dosed, and there were no doctors available to increase the dosage. Had he been admitted at the start of the week, this would not have been the case.

The nurses, despite some early reticence, were very co-operative once pushed, and were visibly doing a good job on the ward. And despite my lack of confidence in the young doctor, I realise she was in a difficult position being on call to 6 wards, and it wasn’t her fault she was doing this work alone. The problem is obviously with the numbers of doctors available. I would expect a reasonable (maximum) reduction of service to be of the order of 4 doctors per ward to 1 per ward – I. e. a 75% reduction. Instead, they are running at a 96% reduced service for 2 days of the week. I’m not quite sure how this is acceptable, and is particularly unfortunate for those who happen to suffer at the weekend.

lindumoxfordia

Upset by attitudes of staff on Primrose ward

Where do I start? My daughter was brought up to Primrose ward after a very traumatic delivery in which my daughter who had really low platelets ended up having epidural and forceps delivery. On arrival at the ward we were met by a group of midwives who weren’t aware that she was being brought up and were really stroppy about not having a bed ready. Great start!

After daughter was eventually found bed she was left to it, even though she couldn’t move after epidural. Baby started vomiting fresh blood, daughters partner notified midwife. 20 minutes later the baby got checked over.

The midwives I met on this ward were extremely rude and arrogant. I felt they were not very nice at all.

Daughter was left from day one till day 3 in a dirty bed covered in blood. She was also left in a gown covered in blood with no help to get showered and changed, this again was left to her partner (after epidural). She had to keep asking for painkillers, none offered.

A midwife asked daughter’s partner to change the baby as baby’s temp had dropped and because he got a vest instead of a babygrow, she was nasty to him (these are first time parents).

Baby was eventually taken to the neonatal unit. It took them 2 hours to sort a drip out for daughter, after she’d asked specifically if they would do it so she could go and feed her son in neonatal.

My daughter’s partner was allowed to stay on ward 24 hrs a day and he asked for something to sleep on, but he got nothing, not even a chair. Then he got shouted at like a child, for being on the bed.

Then to top it off, my daughter was given 10 minutes to leave her room when she was discharged. Baby was still in neonatal so she was distraught. No support, no help to move her belongings, nothing.

All in all, I feel the things I and other visitors to my daughter on Primrose ward have witnessed have been utterly disgraceful. I have never seen midwives on any ward with such bad attitudes as the ones I met on Primrose. I felt they were the rudest, most ill-mannered, uncaring staff I have ever known. Sarcastic comments to my husband who asked for a vase for flowers and was told “oh, we’ll just check the John Lewis vase department” disgusting. I didn’t come across one nice nurse/midwife at all (apart from cleaners and canteen staff).

I feel the treatment my daughter and her partner and her visitors got from these people was totally unacceptable. I would never recommend the Manor maternity. I will be putting in a formal complaint about the way people are treated on this ward.

Coza72

Sciatica

I was given the usual painkillers that did not help at all. They were restricted a bit as I can not take NSAIDS owing to other medication. I was then referred to a physiotherapist. No help there so I was given acupuncture. Weeks of waiting each time.

I was eventually referred to the pain clinic. I waited 16 weeks for this. At no time have I had a scan. I finally had a caudal epidural and an injection.

This has made it considerably worse! The GP put me on morphine to try and control the agonising pain which it did not. The dose has been increased but hardly helping. The side effects are most unpleasant.

I am now waiting another three months for my next appointment, living a life of agony.It is now just one week away from being one year since the start of the sciatica.

Ruggles

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.

disillusioned

Dental Crown fell out pulling most of the tooth with it.

Attended A&E recently in complete pain. Side of my face had swollen up and painkillers are no longer working. I was aware I had a temperature and probably had some form of infection hence swollen face and pain.

I put up with this for 48 hours as I had been trying to get a dental appointment without success.

I was taken to A&E by my daughter who was quite concerned about me. Saw the Triage Nurse who seemed totally disinterested and told me to see my dentist. I explained the problems about getting an appointment but she was adamant they would not see me and I was wasting my time.

I told her I was in real pain and my face was so swollen everything just really hurt. She said she saw my face was swollen but said I was just wasting my time as this is a dentistry problem.

Crownless

Left in pain and uncomfortable after a motorcycle accident

Involved in motorcycle accident so admitted with some haste earlier this month. I am writing this to hopefully make someone aware of a small but atrocious part of my stay.

Overall the care and attention to my problems were exemplary, making this contrast very easy to notice.

The period when this happened was my first evening/night/morning shift in SAU ward.

In short: –

1/ I had an existing potentially serious infection to my right calf and was told to complete my anti-biotics (but didn’t have them with me). I voiced my concern twice as no medication was forthcoming. I was then told off in person by the sister as apparently it had been made clear to me that only a doctor could approve and administer these. I never got the anti-biotics, but luckily symptoms continued to subside.

2/ At no point was I offered painkillers or asked if I was in pain. (I was there 8 hours, through the night)

3/ At no point were bed covers pulled over me or cushions adjusted. I was incapable of performing either of these.

Giacomo

Poor care and communication from Corbett and Russells Hall Hospitals

What was supposed to be a day case procedure has now turned into a 4 week epic. My partner walked into Corbett’s to have a caudal epidural- an injection to ease back pain and was told he’d be back at home for his lunch. He felt the needle go in and was in severe pain. I was phoned to say he had been ‘dead-legged’ and I shouldn’t worry, he’d be back to normal within 24 hrs, but failed to tell me that everyone else had got up and gone home. It took them 5 hours to transfer him to Russell’s Hall. He had no feeling in both legs for 3 days, then got movement back in his one leg. He is now reliant on 2 crutches and a wheelchair to get about.

I’ve had no explanation of what’s wrong with him and his expected recovery time. The consultant did speak to him, but my other half was so spaced out on morphine and painkillers, he can’t remember what was said to him. I’ve never even spoken to a consultant/ doctor and I’m down as his next of kin. He’s been rushed back in through a referral from a physio, still no doctor nor consultant. No explanation of whats wrong and if/when he’ll recover. We’re absolutely furious and anxious as this affects not just the patient but all our family. I feel this was all absolutely atrocious.

820980

Shocking a and r care from in experienced staff

I attended thameside a and e yesterday (31/9/15) as I had fallen and broken my foot.

Now believe me it takes a lot for me go even consider going to a and e due previous bad experiences, but I was in agony and could not walk.

As I entered on crutches clearly in pain with my foot swollen, the staff behind the counter carried on talking and left me stood there! Baring in mind had I called an ambulance (as I have a right too) I would have been given pain relief, a chair and gas and air! Eventually they asked the questions and were very rude and abrupt.

I had an x Ray and a pleasant doctor eventually (3 hours later) came and spoke to me. They thought I had one fracture, but wasn’t sure? Seriously this is a doctor! They went off leaving me alone for a time again, and came back saying I had 3 fractures!! But they needed a further opinion! Okay that’s fine! A very rude obnoxious orthopaedic doctor arrived with an attitude problem, and basically made me feel lied I was lying stating that I couldn’t move my toes that were clearly difformed! the orthopaedic doctor ordered another x Ray! And then about an hour later I was left standing in the corridor as they had no were for me to sit, with 3 fractures in my foot! The obnoxious doctor then said I needed a half cast on to see the fracture clinic!!

Cast has been put on appallingly, my toes (which are fractured and difformed) are hanging out and my ankle is now under pressure!

I asked for some painkillers and I was informed the pharmacy wasn’t open on a bank holiday, so that’s 24 hours without real pain relief!! I asked when I would be seen in the fracture clinic, I was told I would have been called today (Monday) with an appointment! They also stated it could be weeks (in this cast hats falling apart)! I’ve had no phone call at all and I am in agony!

If your doctors can’t cope with a simple foot fracture and don’t even have the decency to treat people with respect I suggest they find another job.

I also asked for a sick note and was told no speak to your GPs.

I rang my gp today who was not very happy at all at there time being wasted with an appointment when you could have done it and they informed me it was you’re responsibility!! I will be lodging a formal complaint!

You are a disgrace and it’s no wonder the nhs is in the state its in!!

I have now made an appointment with a private doctor, and if they diagnose me with something different than your doctors I will be suing, as it was clear they had no clue what they were looking at on the x Ray!

Anonymous

waiting in majors a and e

My wife was admitted to majors a and e 2 weeks ago with severe abdominal pain. She has a pancreatic cyst which was diagnosed 3 years ago and has been monitored under the London hospital yearly. Fortunately she hadn’t had any serious problems until recently when shewas in terrible pain. The Ambulance crew were fantastic and really reassuring. On arrival she was put on a bed in the A and E majors where the nurses attended to her they were very good it then took 4 hours to see a doctor who then got another doctor to try and diagnose her ( she had been previously admitted 2 weeks before with pancreatis) but was sent home instead of being monitored for 48 hours like she should have been and I was going to make sure that this wad not going to happen again. My wife did get admitted to a ward eventually after 9 and a half hours wait and she was totally uncomfortable and it was apparent how the other patients were in pain and the department was far from quiet. When something as serious as pancreatic problems all tests and all scans should be carried out before patients discharge and not to be sent home with painkillers and outpatient appointments. This has to change. My wife is still in a great deal of pain who can barely eat and living on painkillers and is sick off work because of the waiting. Colchester are not specialist in my wife’s condition but she should be reffered immediately back to the Royal London rather than wait to see a consultant which is in October this is far too long to wait! As was her waiting 9 and half hours for a bed on a ward which was available before 7.40 am she was admitted at 22.15 the night before. This is unacceptable. Once she wad on the ward she couldn’t fault her stay. But procedures have to be improved it’s people’s lives they are playing with!

Anonymous

Unacceptable waiting time for dental care

I took a letter from our dentist to the above dept and enquired about length of waiting list. I explained that my husband was on his 3rd course of antibiotics and needed strong painkillers as he had an impacted wisdom tooth which had developed a cyst.

I was told there would approximately 8 weeks wait before an initial consultation and probably a further 8 weeks before treatment. I explained that he had a swollen face but this obviously makes no difference. The receptionist was as helpful as she could be under the circumstances.

A dental nurse looked at the accompanying x-ray and said that she didn’t see my husbands situation as any more of an emergency than all the others on the waiting list and that the consultant would be the one who would make the decision. I obviously understand that but I felt the tone was very dismissive.

My main concern is that my husband’s condition is acute and in need of emergency treatment and there seems to be no system to deal with such emergencies. It is outrageous to expect anyone suffering is such a way to wait 16 weeks for treatment. There is a limit to the amount of antibiotics and strong painkillers one can take.

It is going to cost us almost £2,000.00 to have the tooth removed privately and I am tempted to send the bill to South Staffs PCT for reimbursement.

millydills