About: Colchester General Hospital

Having been told that I had experienced a missed miscarriage at EPU, I opted for a D&C. The wait for this was 8 days. The physical implications of this were impractical as I was already bleeding and had been for three weeks. The thought of going to work with a dead baby inside me which may appear at any time, was challenging to say the least. I felt there was no choice but to opt for a "medically managed" miscarriage. Nothing was managed in this process apart from the insertion of four misoprostol abortion pessaries on a public ward, with a woman in the next bed with a baby crying. The doctor who handled this process was inexperienced to the point of embarrassment, with the emotional intelligence of a flea. The junior doctor assisting her was more capable. After half an hour I was allowed to go, with no pain relief, no information on what to expect, merely a very high level leaflet. A few hours later as I sat on the toilet in agony, trawling the internet for info and re reading aforementioned leaflet, I realised all was not well. Returned to stanway ward gushing blood, unable to stand straight from pain. Was very lucky to get a bed, one left. Saw a doctor 3 hours later who performed a thorough sweep with no pain relief whatsoever as I had "products" stuck in the neck of my womb, asking her assisting nurse for a pot half way through in which to put my baby. Yes I felt relief afterwards, euphoria even. I was given pain relief and sent home. In shock. I would not wish this experience on anyone. No dignity, no expertise, no resources. And when I rang 48 hours later as requested, I was asked several times by the nurse who answered, why are you calling? And when I eventually became exasperated, saying for God's sake, was asked "not to be horrible". The one saving grace of this department is a fabulous sonographer who was kindness and professionalism personified. Why she is wasting her career in Colchester General is beyond me. I was also admitted in April for emergency removal of my appendix, which again was a catalogue of incompetence, broken processes and medical professionals who need to practise medicine a bit more before they are let loose on patients. I will be processing my experiences here for some time. My advice? Go elsewhere. I wish I could say otherwise.

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Response from Colchester General Hospital

I apologise you’ve not had a good patient experience. We try really hard to improve our services based on the comments we receive from our patients, their relatives or carers. We would like the opportunity to discuss your experiences more fully and to apologise in person. If you are willing I would appreciate it if I could ask the matron to contact you. Could you email me, using the reference “Comment on Maternity service at RDEE4-Colchester General Hospital at 04/08/2014 23:58:34 ”, please? Many thanks Paul Searle, Head of Communications Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust info@colchesterhospital.nhs.uk

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