"My 16 month old daughter broke ..."

About: Queen Elizabeth I I Hospital (Welwyn Garden City)

(as the patient),

What I liked

My 16 month old daughter broke her leg in April. The children's A&E was absolutely excellent - couldn't fault them for anything. They saw us quickly, diagnosed the problem and treated our daughter with patience and compassion - really, really good service.

What could be improved

However, our many subsequent visits to fracture clinic have been fraught and upsetting. The appointment system is useless, even if you have the first appointment in the day you are ALWAYS seen late. The nurses have been very mixed - some very kind but others rough and no attempts made to calm and soothe a very distressed little girl. The information given by the doctors has been unclear - we were told clearly that our daughter needed an xray on one appointment so my husband took time off to take her (I am pregnant so can't go into an xray room) only to be told she didn't need an xray. Then, to add insult to injury, we received a subsequent letter saying that the xrays taken on that day were satisfactory! Terrible communication - we were given no idea what to expect once they took the cast off so worried about the strange way she was walking, only to be told, rather contemptuously, that it was normal. Have now been on hold to the appointments line for 23 minutes trying to sort out the mess of appointments made - we have so far been sent 3 separate appointments for the same follow up appointment, and have no idea which one to keep. Would say fracture clinic really needs an overhaul on the appointments system, and the staff need training in how to reassure frightened infants.

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Response from Queen Elizabeth I I Hospital

Thank you for telling us of the recent experiences that your family have had while your daughter was being treated at the QEII hospital.

While pleased to learn how well she was cared for within its children's emergency service, we are disappointed to hear of the problems you have been having with the QEII's fractures clinic. While very busy places, your poor experience is not acceptable and we have shared your feedback with the teams concerned.

If you would like the matter investigated formally, which we would welcome by the way, you can do so by sending a complaint, by e-mail, to patcomplaints.enh-tr@nhs.net.

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