"Appalling Service"

About: Fairfield General Hospital

My family and I have suffered extremely poor care from this NHS trust on numerous occasions. Unfortunately, in emergency situations you've no real choice of provider. This afternoon I took my partner to Fairfield General Hospital on the advice of our GP. My partner has had a stroke in the past, a heart attack and has antibodies in the blood that increase the risk of these happening. Today stroke was suspected. The triage nurse had no interest in listening. We were told by the triage nurse that she would contact the stroke nurse. Half an hour later my partner's symptoms worsened. I knocked on the door of the triage room but received no response. Less than a minute later the nurse came out and shouted another patient's name. Fortunately the lady she had called told her we wanted to speak to her. My partner's symptoms weren't reassessed in the triage room. The nurse discussed them in the waiting room in everyone else's hearing. She said the stroke nurse is here but she doesn't know where to assess you, I'll let her know your symptoms have worsened. Ninety minutes later the stroke nurse appeared. It seems that Fairfield's method of stroke assessment is to leave a patient in the waiting room. When the stroke nurse appeared she said you're going for a CAT scan. It turned out that we simply went from sitting in one waiting room to sitting in another. Eventually a scan was performed. Then we were put back in the main waiting room for A&E. Three hours after arriving we were seen by a doctor who hadn't bothered to read the referral letter. The doctor didn't even seem to be aware there was one until I mentioned it and there it was in the notes, which clearly he hadn't read. I fully appreciate that patients in A&E departments are seen in order of priority of need and that's the way it should be. However, there were patients who arrived in the A&E department after us, who had less serious conditions and were seen prior to us. I know these people had less serious conditions because I spoke to them and I know what was wrong with them. I hope people read this on here and realise what a seriously poor service is being provided at this hospital's A&E department. I could write a letter to their complaint department. I know from bitter experience that first they'll ignore my complaint then they will reply saying we did nothing wrong. If you can avoid going to any service within this trust please, please go to a decent hospital. On this occasion it was fortunate, my patient hadn’t had a stroke. But, they waited three hours to find that out. The TV adverts tell you to act fast if someone has a stroke; seems the NHS hasn’t taken onboard its own message.

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Response from Fairfield General Hospital

We are sorry to read your comment regarding your partners visit to the Accident and Emergency department at Fairfield General Hospital. If you wish to discuss your concerns, please contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on 0161 604 5897. We will also forward your comment to the department manager.

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