"Waiting times"

About: Russells Hall Hospital / General surgery

(as the patient),

I arrived at 7am as instructed for hemaroid removal procedure. I had my last meal at 5: 30 pm, and my last drink of water at 9: 00pm the previous evening. After being booked in, l saw the anaesthetist and then the surgeon who was going to do the operation, l then returned to the admissions waiting area. After a six hour wait and due to the hot dry atmosphere I asked if I could rinse my mouth with water. I was told I could not. After a further 3 hour wait I was sent through to get undressed ready for my operation, at this point I was given some surgical stockings to wear due to the risk of DVT, at this point I had been sitting for 9 hours, surely the risk was greater sitting this long than having the operation. After the operations I was Informed I had been given two bags of saline, I presume because I was so dehydrated, and I was then given my first drink for about 21. 5 hours. Surely this is not correct procedure. We got home at 9: 30 pm, 15 hours after starting out. I was told I may need a further operation, will I go, probably not after these unacceptable waiting times. Russell's hall was Russell's Hell for me.

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Response from Alice Ford, Communications and Staff Engagement Officer, Communications and Patient Experience, The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for posting feedback about your recent visit to our hospital. We would like to assure you that we take all comments seriously and act upon them as part of our on-going commitment to patient experience.

We know how frustrating it can be for patients who have to wait longer than we would like to have their procedures. Depending on the type of surgery, patients join different types of theatre lists. The all-day lists run from 9am to 5pm and patients are brought in at the same time. This allows time for them to be seen by the surgeon, anaesthetist and nursing staff who admit them. A patient’s place on the list can sometimes change and this would always be a clinical decision. However, all efforts should be made to keep patients informed about any delays.

We have worked closely with our patient experience team to make the waiting area more comfortable and we are currently waiting for a television to be installed.

All patients undergoing general anaesthetic go through pre-operative assessment when they are provided with their fasting instructions. For all day lists, such as yours, the advice should have been that you could drink water up to 6am on the morning of the procedure and eat up until midnight the day before. We must apologise if this did not happen. We have passed your comments onto the specialty manager in charge of theatre lists and she will liaise with the senior team in theatre to develop a more robust system to improve communication.

It is difficult to comment further on your specific case, however, without reviewing your case notes. If you would like us to look into your concerns in more detail, please get in touch with our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on free phone 0800 0730510 who will be very happy to help.

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