Rude and Unprofessional

My boyfriend was at University when he started to feel very unwell. He had really strong pain in his stomach and was vomiting all the time. Someone called an ambulance and he was taken to this hospital. He was lying on the floor in A&E with plastic bag. He was in pain and was vomiting. He asked 2 doctors for help but there was no reaction.

After one hour a nurse took him and put him on a bed. She asked a lot of questions about alcohol and drugs and left. He doesnt take any drugs and he doesnt drink alcohol. After another hour doctor came and asked the same questions. My boyfirend was still in terrible pain and was vomiting all the time…. After another 40minutes they did blood tests and gave him paracetamol.

After next hour they said that blood tests are fine, they gave him co-codamol and sent him home. He said that he cant walk on his own and that he lives on the other side of London and that his parents will be there in another 40minutes. And what nurse did? She said that he has to leave now and that he can take a cab…

Is that a joke?

We took him from the station. He werent able to walk and talk and was vomiting.

It happened on Wednesday. On thursday he had jus a slice of bread for dinner and on friday morning I took him back to hospital. Now he is in Northwick Park Hospital and its another joke…


Emotionally scarred after my son’s birth at Queens Hospital

At the end of December 2010 my contractions started. I did not contact the hospital as I knew the contractions needed to be 3-5 minutes apart and I needed to be at least 4cm dilated or I would be sent home again.

They settled down until the next evening and by the early hours of the day after they were 3 minutes apart so I rang the Triage Ward at Queens Hospital.

I was asked where the pain was and I said ‘down low, very painful and the pains were 3 minutes apart’ as I’d been sat in my kitchen timing them!

The Triage Nurse replied that that’s just normal pregnancy cramps and to call back when the real pains started up high. I told her that they had started up high the day before and I knew the labour had started properly but she insisted that I stay at home and wait for it to start properly. My sister and I decided against that advice and made our way to Queens Hospital.

I arrived there at 2:30am and after being examined I was 4cm dilated and the labour had started. I had quite a sick labour and was on Gas & Air to begin with, but had stated in my birth plan that if I wasn’t coping with the Gas & Air alone I would like an epidural.

I was waiting in the triage ward for 2-3 hours for a bed on the labour ward to become available, when I did eventually get a bed I was made to get up and walk to the room where I was to give birth – whilst vomiting.

I was then greeted by the midwife who would be delivering me. Her attitude right from the beginning was utterly appalling. She did not speak to me at all for the first 20 minutes or so, just groaned when I was asking her questions.

My sister who was my birthing partner asked if my robe could be changed as I had been very sick on it and it smelt disgusting – the midwife refused and told her to leave it.

Once the labour was in full swing I was in pain and still using the Gas and Air. The Midwife told me not to use the Gas & Air when I wasn’t in pain as it was a waste. I started to feel that I wanted to push but she kept telling me I wasn’t ready. I asked her to examine me and see how dilated I was – she refused as due to Health and Safety, and said I could only be examined every 4 hours.

I was starting to lose my temper and said I couldn’t resist the urge to push and please, please could she examine me, so she did and said I was 10cm dilated and so ready to start pushing at which point she took the Gas & Air off me and I now had no pain relief. I was trying to keep hold of the gas & air and she physically ripped it from my hand and said No.

Within half an hour of no pain relief I was really struggling and asked for the epidural. I was refused this as there may not be enough time and the anaesthetist would be at least half an hour as he was too busy. I had a drip put in my hand should the anaesthetist become available. This was not kept an eye on and during the birth was twisted round in my wrist and made my wrist balloon and eventually go black.

Whilst pushing and trying to give birth, the midwife stood leaning against the wall about a foot away from me with her arms crossed telling me to “close your mouth, I don’t want to hear that noise” and “hurry up, my shift is finished in 45 minutes and I’m tired and want to go home”.

She was not in the slightest bit encouraging and told me to just push like I was going to the toilet and just kept repeating the word “toilet”.

My waters were not breaking so I had to ask her over and over again to break them for me. When she did the waters were a very green colour – my baby had done a poo in my waters as he was distressed and decided she was going to perform an episiotomy as the baby kept slipping back up. My sister was at the end of my bed at this point and asked the midwife why she was struggling when making the incision. The Midwife replied saying “Jesus Christ, these scissors are blunt” from what I can gather she should have gone and got a completely new surgical pack but instead she continued hacking away and 30 mins later my son was born.

The paediatrician came in and said he was ‘grunting’ as he was slightly distressed and needed to be brought up to the correct temperature so was put under the heater.

The midwife had already left her shift and gone home, leaving my cut open and bleeding heavily. My partner at this point went to find someone to come and stitch up the incision and demanded to know why she had made such a mess of it. Eventually someone came in to do the stitches and explained to us that the midwife had used blunt scissors and she would now have to stitch up the incision but also do some cosmetic stitching as she had torn me in 5 places. Whilst trying to stitch me up it ripped open again as it couldn’t hold so some of it had to be left in the hope it would heal on its own.

After giving birth I had to wait nearly all day for a bed on the Post-Natal ward. I was then kept in for 3 days completely unnecessarily. I began to feel very stressed, I found the attitudes of some of the midwives on the post-natal ward absolutely disgusting. Some of them didn’t even speak when coming in your room, or just grunted at you when you spoke to them.

My episiotomy was quite sore by the 2nd day and I was taking the 2 paracetamol when they were brought round and offered but by the evening of the 2nd day there, I was refused them when they were brought round as I should be careful how many I take. I hadn’t even had the six in 24 hours and was in pain.

By the 3rd day I was in tears. Someone came round to check my pulse and blood pressure – my pulse was very high, no-one would let me go home or even come and explain anything to me. The last day I was there I had no breakfast offered, had to go and find something to eat.

The midwife that discharged me was so rude to me, I think I can honestly say I have never been spoken to in such a rude manner as I was that day, made even worse still by the fact that I was feeling so vulnerable and needed reassurance. My partner was finally allowed to come and pick me up that evening.

My partner can verify, I broke down in tears when I got home. In the following fortnight I had to have two courses of antibiotics as I had an infection in the incision and could not sit down properly for 2 weeks nor bend over or bath properly, going to the toilet was like urinating on an open wound which was so painful.

Some of the outside skin that had to be left un-stitched has now healed over the stitches (that I was told would dissolve but they haven’t) and I am still having pains and twinges when I am sitting down for too long or walking long distances.

From a personal point of view I can only describe the feelings over those 3 days as like being on trial and locked up in the meantime. I should have been able to enjoy my baby but I felt I was being scrutinised the whole time. I do feel emotionally scarred by the whole experience. Giving birth is a very daunting experience at the best of times, especially being my first baby, I pushed so hard to sort out housing because I wanted the best for my baby and I knew I needed to be organised for when he arrived and did not want to even temporarily be in a hostel.

None of this was helped by the fact I have no mum around to support me at all, and having to deal with it all alone is what I find most difficult. I will also be honest and admit that I am also now almost too scared to seek any help like counselling or speak to any Health Visitors about any problems I may have as I just feel I would almost be being judged and made to feel inadequate as a parent which I know 100% is not the case.

I am suffering now in silence, cried over the experience a few times and will not feel better about any of it overnight. I would like this looked into, and am planning on aiming for compensation for the way I was treated and how I’ve been left feeling – especially now I feel like I’m alone and like I cannot trust healthcare professionals.

I cannot name any of the midwives, despite ringing and asking for that information I have been refused more than once, and told if I want to see my notes I will be charged. I am certainly not paying for that information.


Angry about my son’s care at Basildon

Basildon Hospital mis-diagnosed my 3 year old son with “stomach migraines” only to find out when he was 20, after hospitalisation after a really bad attack, that he actually had a blockage between his kidney and his bladder.

He had endured 17 years of vomiting, extreme pain, missed school and the worry that he could get an attack at any time.

However not one to hold a grudge we were pleased that in fact the blockage could be removed by laser treatment and he would be cured. We did not want him discharged from hospital until the problem was sorted but were promised that my son would see his consultant within 4 weeks. His first appointment was subsequently cancelled, then his second and his final appointment (although not yet cancelled) was actually 4 months later.

My son was told to carry on with his life as normal. However after a trauma to his side his kidney ruptured and had to have emergency surgery. Fortunately he was taken to Colchester Hospital who actually seem to have their act in gear but the fact remains that my son is suffering while the rupture repairs and he will then still have the original blockage.

I am extremely angry with Basildon Hospital and have written a letter of complaint but in reality don’t expect much back from them.

Wickford Resident

My frail mother’s wait at A&E

On Tuesday 26th May 2009, my mother was taken to Tameside General Hospital in an ambulance in a very distressed condition, continually vomiting and feeling very frail and uncomfortable. We were put into a very busy Accident & Emergency where there was a 3/4 hour waiting time.

For an old lady who was feeling very ill and vomiting in front of complete strangers, which included young children, who I am sure the last thing they want to see is an old lady being sick and also to be placed in front of people who were much worse for drink and the continuous vile language throughout the night, it was so degrading for her. It felt very intimidating as there were groups of youths in the doorway swearing and smoking, most of them were not stood there for medical attention.

The security office which is just across the road from the entrance to the Accident & Emergency must have been able to see the number of youths around the doorway, did not seem to care about the situation in and around the waiting room.

Surely, there could be a quieter area, where people who are very ill could be placed while waiting for medical attention.

This is not a complaint against any of the staff who are carrying out their duties under very difficult circumstances and conditions.


Treatment at Kettering General Hospital

My wife has a gallstone, this has been recently diagnosed.

Overnight my wife suffered from an inflamed gallbladder, with vomiting, chest pains and generally feeling unwell. NHS Direct said to get to A&E asap..

On arrival at Kettering General Hospital the examination was quick and my wife was admitted.

One of the doctors insisted on examining her rectal passage with his fingers. I don’t know where this fits in with the gall bladder inflammation!

On arrival at the surgical assessment ward the staff seemed nice and caring, but it was a different story once transferred onto another ward.

There appears to be one nurse and several ‘helpers’ – the helpers run errands, man the nurses station and talk amongst themselves, while the nurse seemed just too busy to care properly.

There is a smell of urine and unwashed bodies about the ward, the washing facilities for patients seems to be a shower/toilet across a corridor. I don’t know the ratio of washing facilities per patient, but it doesn’t look very high.

My wife is on an IV drip – the saline is left to expire until the line fills with her own bloods – this has happened on 3 occasions in the past day.

Nobody will give a straight answer of how long until my wife is either given an operation to remove the gallstone or will be released.

The ward itself is clean enough on the surfaces likely to be touched, but the windows coverings (vertical blinds) are filthy and the floor corners are a different colour to bits of the floor that is dry mopped from time to time, and it doesn’t look like much above waist height have had a wipe over in a while.

In my opinion, many things look shabby, chipped, worn. Looking out of the window, the buildings themselves appear to be poorly maintained with rot holes in soffits that allow pigeons into roof spaces, the grounds look like they have not been gardened and it all looks generally unloved.

The staff we were in contact with appear demotivated and in my opinion the doctors do not appear frequently enough. Many of the auxiliaries I saw seemed to avoid contact with the patients.

My wife is loathed to complain as she needs the gallbladder operation and is worried that complaining will prejudice her treatment.

This doesn’t look like a place of care, and doesn’t feel or smell like one either.


Labour ward at The Royal London Hospital

From my experience, I think the Labour Ward is an absolute disgrace.

The midwives I encountered did not seem interested and in my opinion they were rude and need re-training. The post natal care, in my case, seemed to be non existent. I would rather give birth in the street than in that hospital again.

I went into the ward in late morning and after 6 hours of contractions, I was bleeding quite heavily and severely vomiting. I was examined and told it was normal and to go home. Little did I know the midwife had missed vital signs that mine and my baby’s lives were in danger.

I returned to the hospital as I was in severe pain between contractions and bleeding even heavier. I was taken into a room with blood all over the floor, not a great start. I was examined and told everything was normal – however my baby’s heartbeat was causing concern. It was monitored and then another midwife decided the monitor was picking up my heartbeat not the baby’s. Oh how wrong, was she?

I rapidly deteriorated but no one would help. The midwife was ignoring my pleas for help and didn’t seem to know where any equipment was. Still vomiting and bleeding even heavier, I was asked if I could walk down to the delivery suite.

Eventually in the late evening, I was seen by a Dr who was so concerned that my baby’s heartbeat was over 170, they pulled someone out of theatre and rushed me in.

I was severely dehydrated and had a blood loss of over 2 litres. My baby’s heartbeat dropped to below 40 and the situation had become critical.

Had they listened to me 4 hours ago maybe my placenta wouldn’t have abrupted and caused the blood loss and stress to my baby.

After the c section, I was wheeled back to the delivery suite to be greeted by a midwife seemingly demanding I breastfeed my baby. I had been pumped full of drugs and suffered extreme dehydration, couldn’t move and was barely able to talk.

She continually put pressure on me and refused to help me bottle feed my baby. This was the start of things to come.

The only pleasant midwives, in my experience, were the students. I discharged myself within 48 hours due to the poor treatment I received.

To name a few issues, I was shouted at, prescribed medication unsuitable for someone with Asthma and refused different pain relief for 36 hours, given a blood pressure test on an arm with a drip in it which exploded, stabbed in the arm with an injection with such force it instantly bruised, not shown where any facilities were, not given water as I was on a drip and apparently didn’t need any more fluid.

The staff continually walked in my room without introducing themselves or explaining what they were there to do. I witnessed a midwife shout at another member of staff across my room and then she proceeded to speak badly of her in front of me. At no point was I shown how to change, dress or feed my baby.

I could write so much more about my experience, but the bottom line is in my opinion people should not use the maternity services at this hospital.


Disgust at care of my grandmother

My grandmother was admitted to arrowe park hospital a week before Christmas with a chest infection and fluid on the lungs. After a few days she seemed to pick up a little, much to our relief. That is until she was moved to a ward that was closed at the time due to a bug infection, they still put her in that ward anyway. My grandmother started being sick after meals and lost her appetite and also started getting very depressed. The staff then claimed my grandmother was making herself sick and did not find out the reasons behind her sickness. My grandmother became very poorly and fragile and could not hold a cup properly, so asked for a beaker. This was taken away and replaced with a cup again, so she then kept spilling on herself.

One evening a care assistant decided it was time my grandmother got out of bed and walked to the toilet. My grandmother said she didn’t feel able. Considering she could only walk few steps with the physio therapist, there was no way she could manage a walk half way down the ward. She got there with what I can only imagine was a real struggle, but fell on the way back! I am a care assistant, so I see this as abuse, as I am sure this care assistant should know if she has ever done a POVA (Protection of Vulnerable Adults) course and had any common sense. As 3 weeks have passed since she arrived on the ward, they have now realised my grandmother has the diarrhea and sickness bug, after weeks of saying that she was making herself sick.

I would not rate this ward for its care and can only see my grandmother get weaker and more poorly by the day through lack of care.


Great experience of the NHS

After three days of constant vomiting, my 6 year old son was referred to QMC by our GP. The relationship between the GP and the hospital was fantastic! We were quickly and efficiently sent over to the hospital. My GP was excellent and very fast acting in this respect. At A&E, we were seen in 15minutes, which seemed frustratingly long at the time, but I now appreciate was very quick. The triage nurse saw my son, and he was put on a drip to immediately begin rehydrating him, he looked very poorly! He then had thorough examinations by three doctors, who were calming and knowledgeable. They found a heart murmur, which concerned them, so my son was kept in overnight which also helped with his rehydration. My wife was allowed to stay with him and he was discharged the next day. Before he was discharged, we saw the chief cardiologist who assured us that the heart murmur was a result of my son’s body fighting the illness, so hard. Though, he kindly offered us reassurance and follow up if we wanted. It was a great experience of the NHS, all at the hospital were brilliant. If I had one small criticism it was the slight lack of communication when waiting for doctors to see my son. A bit of guidance or time line for when to expect someone would have been nice. Still- many thanks!


Ward 42: Lacking the basic care I feel I should have received.

I was admitted to Ward 42 at the Tameside Hospital.

The treatment I received here was appalling. When I tried to walk, for example to go to the toilet, I was very unsteady on my feet but was refused any assistance. I persevered to get about on the ward by holding on to the walls and bed ends for support. On one occasion I missed the end of my bed and fell, I must have blacked out because I was facing the other way when I came round. I tried to get up, other patients told me to stay where I was until they got help. A Sister did help me up and got me back into bed. If the ward staff had been observant and given help I would not have fallen.

When a doctor did her rounds she seemed to think everything was OK and that there nothing wrong with me, although after the fall my foot was painful. When I received a visitor they noticed I was in pain and arranged for me have an X-ray to check my foot. When the result came back to the ward the doctor said the X-ray was clear, my bloods were fine, nothing wrong with me and walked off. No pain relief was offered, no care was shown or given.

When I did ask for pain killers the nurse said she would get some for me. I waited 20 minutes and asked again. Waited for another 30 minutes at which point I was told I had to wait until she did the medicine round, even then she made sure I was the last patient to be seen, taking her time to give medicines and chat to other patients.

I remained on the ward for a few days, being a Coeliac sufferer and very sensitive to gluten I kept to the same meals – keeping some of the rice to have with sugar for a desert.

One patient also overheard an exchange between me and the nurse who did not think I should be leaning on her – this was when I was in the toilet and had to call for help as I could not put weight on my foot. She also made it clear that there was nothing wrong with me, if I could not put weight on my foot I should hop. The patient overheard this and kept telling other patients that I was attention seeking.

I spoke to the nurses about the way in which this patient was treating me, one of them said she would speak to her. After she had done so she came back to me to tell me that the patient had denied this behaviour. The one creating the problems also told me I was keeping her awake at night – the pain got so bad that I had to have a cry at night – my quiet sobbing was disturbing her. I told her she would have a good night’s sleep that night as I would stay in the day-room overnight. One of the night nurses found me there at 4.00 in the morning and took me back to bed.

I was eventually allowed to use a walking frame to help me get about on the ward. Several times I asked for physiotherapy for my foot. When the physiotherapist came they looked at how I was managing with the walking frame and left it at that.

I did get good treatment from a couple of auxiliaries who helped me with having a couple of baths – they could see that my foot was painful and concerned when it made me wince when they were drying my foot. I told them not to worry, to dry my foot as quickly as possible.

After a few days I was discharged from Ward 42 even though my foot was not treated.

After a couple of weeks at home because of continuing problems with my foot my GP prescribed an anti-inflammatory medication. I had a severe reaction to this and needed to call an ambulance which took me into A&E. I was kept waiting in A&E on a chair, with pain and heavy abdominal pain, from 4. 00 pm to early the following morning when I was sent home. However, the reaction to the anti-inflammatory medication caused bleeding so I had to return to A&E – this time I was in a cubical with a bed. I was not given any padding to absorb the bleeding, I used paper towels. From A&E I was moved to an observation ward. Here I was left in the waiting room with only seats to lie on for ages before being transferred to the Women’s Health Unit.

On the Women’s Health Unit I was told I would not be discharged until I had a bowel movement without blood. Whilst there nobody asked about this or checked.

Whilst on this ward I somehow had food with gluten which upset my digestion and made me sick. The heavy bleeding had weakened me and vomiting was making me weaker. None of the nurses helped – a Polish patient on the ward was the only one who tried to help and gave comfort. When I needed the toilet I asked for a commode as I was feeling so weak – the Sister stopped a nurse from giving me a commode.

When a doctor came to see me I was told I was on the wrong ward, the ward was for gynaecological problems and as I was no longer bleeding I should go home. No one seemed concerned about how I was feeling after the gluten intake or about the bowel motion. The Sister had very little understanding about the effect of gluten and how long it can affect a Coeliac sufferer to recover– she just kept saying the gluten was out of my system and I was fine.

Ward staff prepared to discharge me, one nurse did arrange for me to use a commode during the night but in the morning I was made to use the toilet. Arrangements were made for transport home at 7: 00pm. I was feeling unwell and cold – the Sister thrust a thermometer into my ear, informed me my temperature was 35. 5 – a good temperature and nothing was wrong with me.

To try and make a point about how poorly I felt I got down onto the floor – this generated some action although not to find out why I felt so unwell.

Problems occurred with my transport so I was moved off the ward to Ward 3 to wait for an ambulance to take me home the following morning. The Sister on the ward asked If I wanted to lie on a bed – I crawled onto the bed she offered, I was so weak. After a while I did feel better at which point the Sister asked if I’d like to change into my night clothes so that I would be more comfortable. On this ward I did get the level of treatment I expected – the night sister kept checks on me made sure I was alright.

I am now at home but am housebound. Before I was admitted to hospital I was fit and active, regularly doing voluntary work at a charity shop and going to the leisure centre. I now find it very difficult to walk and although I have had some aids fitted to help, the quality of my life has deteriorated. My GP has offered me physiotherapy but I would need to get to the hospital under my own steam – this adds to the expense.

Overall, my stays in the hospital were very disappointing, lacking the basic care I feel I should have received.


Gallbladder problems

About three years ago I suffered an attack of which I thought was indigestion. When it happened again about a month later I visited my doctor who prescribed Omepregole. For a short period of time the attacks returned and I had to go back to the doctor several more times.I was referred to the hospital for camera tests which revealed Duodenitis and inflammation of the stomach. The medication to Lanzoprazole which I still take. These attacks three years on are still happening. I was taken ill on the 11th Nov 08 and I went to the doctor who gave me no examination and another box of Lanzoprazole. I thought nothing of it because as always after these attacks I felt like I had been beaten on the inside from the strain of vomiting. This continued throughout the week and on the 14th of that week I had another attack whilst at work and was taken to hospital. The doctor asked me some questions and took some blood then sent me to x-ray. He informed me after these tests that in fact it was my gallbladder. I was admitted to the ward where I had good care. I have been informed that the gallbladder will have to come out and I am now waiting for a pre-op appointment.