"Visit to South Shields General Hospital following head injury"

About: South Tyneside District Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as the patient),

After becoming concerned about my symptoms and increasingly severe headache two days after my head injury I returned to A&E to get checked out - I suffered a panic attack in the waiting room and approximately 4 or 5 nurses on duty just stood around and watched me whilst doing nothing - one nurse actually got me a wheelchair, then I was basically told to calm down while they took my blood pressure and some details then I was pushed in the wheelchair to the waiting room further up the corridor and left to wait - for two hours - suffered another panic attack as my headache worsened and due to the heat in the room I felt I couldn't breathe.

Despite my mum requesting I be seen as quickly as possible, and despite being told I was 'next to be seen by the doctor' I was left for the two hours. I am disgusted at the nurses total disregard to my well-being, many were on duty, only a small number of people were in the main waiting room at the time with only one in the second waiting room. A lot of staff were just standing around talking.

I certainly will not return there, I think that the staff I met did not seem to be interested in people's welfare and are merely doing the bare minimum of what they are required to do without actually possessing any empathy or actual care. Appalling. Will be going to the QE in Gateshead in future.

If my head injury symptoms had been serious, it may well have been critical that I was seen quickly - this A&E department simply do not care about the patients its as simple as that.

On this occasion I also discovered that on my initial visit to the hospital two days ago when I first hurt my head, I was under the impression that it was an actual doctor who had assessed me, however today the nurse said to me 'we'll get the doctor to see you this time'.

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Responses

Response from South Tyneside District Hospital

Thank you for taking the time and effort to post your comments on NHS Choices regarding your recent visit to the A&E Department at South Tyneside District Hospital. I am sorry your experience was not of our usual very high standard and that you were kept waiting at a time when you would be concerned and anxious about your head injury. If you write to me at the South Tyneside District Hospital, Harton Lane, South Shields, NE34 0PL, or email me at lorraine.lambert@stft.nhs.uk, I will have your concerns fully investigated and a formal response sent to you. In the interim period, I will forward your comments to the respective managers in order that they can discuss your experience with the staff concerned and that appropriate lessons can be learned. Kind Regards Lorrain B Lambert Chief Executive

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