"Poor Communication Lets This Hospital Down"
About: Kingston Hospital Kingston Hospital Kingston Upon Thames KT2 7QB
I arrived at A and E in the early morning with a suspected fracture of the foot. I got my x-ray promptly after the X-Ray department had opened (lovely staff) and had to return to A and E. Again I was seen promptly by the pleasant Triage Nurse and a nurse came to collect me to take to the Minor Injuries section. He walked to the entrance of A and E; I thought he was going outside (!) but he was collecting a wheelchair for me. Not a word of explanation from him, (a man of few words I discovered, but friendly); but I got in and off we went. Halfway down the corridor a Reception Staff member stopped him and started asking him about another patient. This went on for a little while. I waited patiently (what else could I do, being captive in the wheelchair?), but was disappointed that I got not a look, or a word of recognition, such as "Excuse me", or "Sorry" for butting in. I felt completely invisible. This behaviour happened again, later on at the Fracture Clinic, when a Staff Nurse came in and interrupted the technician who was treating me to talk about another patient, as if I just wasn't there. All it needs is is an "excuse me, may I just speak to .... for a moment?" My fracture was diagnosed and treated without my ever seeing a Doctor; apparently it was done "remotely". At first the nurse told me I would have a plaster cast from toe to knee as I had a complete break in the toe bone in question and that it was "quite out". This was subsequently changed, after another x-ray, to an Aircast Boot only. Do I feel completely confident that I have been correctly treated? Not really. No Doctor has seen me, I have had no explanation of my injury, change of treatment, or been told which bone I have actually broken. Many of the staff were really pleasant and friendly, especially nurses, porters and Technician, but staff who treat patients as non-entities (see above), need immediate retraining.