"Finding a District Nurse to do my dressings following an operation "

About: Bolton PCT Royal Bolton Hospital / General surgery

(as a staff member),

I was admitted to F3 to have an operation and my care at the hospital was excellent. I was advised to contact Avondale district nurses on Monday morning to arrange for my dressing to be changed but when I rang them I was told that they had no appointment until Wednesday and given Crompton way D/N's only to be told the same thing and given another telephone number for Breightmet health centre were I eventually attended. The reason I am telling this story is because when I came out of hospital (which was the day after my operation) I did not feel well enough to start ringing around to find a district nurse who could do my dressing and my main concern was that if I did not have the dressing changed I might get an infection in the wound. Working for PCT I was also suprised that the centres that I rang did not offer to transfer the call to another centre when most of the centres are linked by internal tel numbers. I only hope the proceedure is not the same for the elderly.

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Response from Communications Manager, NHS Bolton

We were sorry to hear that you had such a disappointing experience of trying to access District Nursing support after your discharge from hospital.

A protocol is in place to ensure that, if someone calls for an appointment when the treatment room session is already fully booked, alternative arrangements are made to see that patient without referring them to another health centre. This protocol does not seem to have been followed in your case, and admin staff will be reminded of the correct procedures.

We will also remind all staff of the facility to transfer calls between buildings using the PCT’s new telephone system, which would have made things a little easier.

If you would like us to look into what happened in your particular case in more detail to see if any specific lessons can be learned, you can, of course, contact the Complaints Department.

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