"A and E experience"

About: Princess Alexandra Hospital (Harlow)

Having injured my knee last Monday, I was fitted in to see the nurse any my GP the following day. I was told to rest and ice it and 'see how it goes'. This assessment was also one made by my husband. However, upon informing my netball team and club captains I would be unavailable for our match the next day, they suggested that I should have it checked out at A and E just in case it was more serious. I went at 7pm and was home by 10.15pm. The entire time I was there, every single member of staff that were involved in my care that evening were courteous, informative and extremely helpful. They all seemed to be going out of their way to ensure I was properly looked after. Upon arrival I was immediately registered by a receptionist taking my injury details. I did not wait any longer than 15 minutes when I was seen in triage. Rather than being told I should just see how my knee injury goes, the nurse took it very seriously, suggesting that the swelling was worse than I was making it out to be. They took time to telephone to orthopaedics asking if I could be seen, of which they agreed. I was warned I may have to wait a while, but in fact only needed to wait 20 minutes before being examined further. A member of staff assessed my movement and clearly explained how my movement differed from my uninjured knee and what the possible treatments I may have to experience were. Unfortunately, due to the time of day, I was unable to be seen by an orthopaedic consultant as their shifts were changing and I would had to have waited for a long time. Instead, I was provided with crutches and a metal knee support to ensure it did not move out of place, as well as being signed off work for two weeks and strict instructions of care to ensure the healing process was as efficient and effective as possible. An MRI scan appointment was made for the following week, also allowing for better results as the swelling would have reduced, but sadly not at Harlow as the department was temporarily closed down, but instead having to travel to Herts and Essex. Despite this, I would like to thank all members of staff who assisted me that evening, as I certainly felt like I was in a private hospital rather with the speed of care I received. I do not always take the time to rate experiences, but with the NHS more often being in the news for bad press than good, I felt that this was simply not the case in all hospitals and certainly not my experience in the A and E department at Harlow. Keep up the great work.

Story from NHS Choices

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