"Medical Assessment Unit"

About: Royal Gwent Hospital / General Medicine

(as the patient),

On several occasions I have had to attend the Medical Assessment Unit (MAU). What I experienced is that consultants with a particular expertise cover this Unit on a rota basis. It is therefore important that you check that they have the necessary expertise to deal with your condition, and if necessary other specialist consultants are involved.

I have attended this MAU on several occasions. This required blood samples being taken, which I understand. Female nurses are usually very expert in taking blood, thank goodness, but one male doctor and one advanced nurse practitioner were not. In relation to the former, blood was taken from the back of my hand, although I expressed concern and requested this be obtained elsewhere. Hardly patient consent! My objection was excused and blood was taken, resulting in a bad bruise for two weeks. It was as if it was only important that this was easiest for them, rather than best for me.

I have also had two poor experiences with the same advanced nurse practitioner over the past 18 months. On the first occasion the whole of the back of my hand was black for three weeks. No one seemed to find this out of the ordinary, although in the same unit less senior older nurses did this without a trace!

Two weeks ago I experienced the same male nurse. I felt very ill, what could I say when he required blood! This time he took blood not in the centre, but to the side of where my arm folds. Again this has caused a two inch square blood mark. I cannot be the only patient being treated in this way. Who could I complain to when this nurse was in charge of the unit. As a former nurse I would say that this person requires retraining. How many more feel this way without wishing to complain.

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