"understaffing in A&E"

About: Crosshouse Hospital / Accident & Emergency

(as a service user),

I attended a&e with a friend recently. I have a nursing background & I was absolutely disgusted with what I witnessed. I have to say this was very obviously not any staff members fault. The problem as I saw it, was too many patients & a hugely understaffed area. The staff Were all running about trying their best, looking extremely stressed and desperate. Chaos is the only way I can describe what I saw. Staff apologised constantly to patients & relatives & said this was a particularly bad night but more or less how things are in a&e all the time. In the three hours I was there I heard an old lady beg for help the whole time I was there. I walked past the room she was in a few times & she was sat on her own with her head in her hands crying & begging for help. Another lady was hanging off the end of a trolley and seemed to me quite obviously about to fall, her family were distraught & paced for hours because no one was helping. Another old lady was sat in a chair at the door waiting to be seen by doctors. She had nothing to eat or drink for hours & was frozen sitting hugging herself. It became apparent there was no beds for patients so they were in chairs & trolleys for the night and yet there was a constant flow of more being brought in. I feel upset even writing this as it was utterly appalling. In my opinion patients were at risk being there when there didn't seem to be enough people to look after them. I am seeking advice on where to take my concerns further.

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Responses

Response from Eunice Goodwin, Patient Feedback Manager for NHS Ayrshire and Arran, Quality Improvement and Governance Team, NHS Ayrshire and Arran

picture of Eunice Goodwin

Dear Pollypocket,

I am very sorry to hear you were so appalled by your recent visit to A&E. I will definitely pass this to the managers to let them consider your post. I can understand why you found it distressing, I admit, I found reading it distressing too. It is always very disappointing to hear the service has not met expectations and the standard we aspire to. We appreciate your candour and bringing this to our attention. I think it would be helpful if we cold add some details about your visit.

If you think it would be helpful and you would like to talk to one of the management team, please contact me, you can email me on eunice.goodwin@aapct.scot.nhs.uk or phone me on 01563 826222. There are other options open to you which we can talk about if you want to call me e.g. you could contact the complaints team on 0800 169 1441, there are external services and of course you could contact your local MSP.

I hope this response is helpful to decide what action you now wish to take.

Kind regards

Eunice

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