"Grace under pressure"

About: Cheltenham General Hospital

Things did not start well - within first 48 hours I was accused of being mad and a fantasist, and one consultant even said that as soon "as the blood tests come back we are going to toss your possessions in a plastic bag and deposit you and it outside the nearest A&E to your home" (which was Cheltenham General!),

Then the tests came back: broken spine in six places leading to paralysis in waist area, acute kidney failure both kidneys, sepsis leading to permanent damage to heart, liver, pancreas and infection to lungs, faecal incontinence, at least one heart attack, gout at the very rare stage of stage 4.

I had six weeks of excellent care and without the attention of the team there, these issues would have gone untreated for a few more years leading to permanent and total paralysis.

Instead, the deterioration was arrested through the diligence of the nursing and junior doctor team on this ward.

Sadly my spine injury or injuries were picked up too late to address, spinal column is now deteriorating and I am wheelchair bound for life.

I would particularly wish to commend the many nurses, often in training or from their bank who were expected to sit with violent patients, were punched and spat at, yet continued to smile and offer love and attention to these poor souls and to provide what dignity they could to those of us with incontinence and in my case with a permanent rectal bleed.

I would also like to commend the chaplaincy for the support they offer which I suspect is taken for granted and wrongly so.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Cheltenham General Hospital

Hi there,

We're sorry to hear about your experience in A&E, but it's good to hear that you were impressed by some of those involved in your care. We will pass all your comments on to the staff in A&E, to help us improve the care we provide for patients in the future.

If you would like to speak to someone in more detail about the issues you have raised here, please do get in touch with our patient liaison (PALS) team who can take a few more details and investigate further. You can call them on 0800 019 3282 (Free phone) or email pals.gloucestershirehospitals@glos.nhs.uk

Thank you again for bringing the above to our attention.

Best wishes

The team at Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

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