"I had not asked for a discharge"

About: Collective Voice: North West Standing Conference Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust Tameside General Hospital / General medicine

(as the patient),

I was admitted to Tameside Hospital having a problem that had seen me in the hospital previously. It was a horrible time for me as I truly worried for my life. As there was a shortage of beds I was told I'd be put in a ward which is for patients with serious stomach problems.

My illness was unrelated. I was informed that the medic assigned to me would see me at 11.00am and I was also given the said medics name.

What a surprise, I did not see anyone until the following Monday.

Naturally by then I was extremely concerned and also very anxious.

I asked as to when the medic would arrive and I felt like I was grudgingly told at 11.00am.

The medic actually arrived at around 11.30-11.45, which I think consequently meant that every patient he was to see would have their lunch interrupted and therefore the lunchtime meal would be cold. I did not see or hear any apologies or consideration of the same given by said medic. My thought at the time was I wonder how much he would appreciate it if I interrupted him halfway through his lunch without any apology or explanation.

And so I asked him directly as to where he got to the first time I was supposed to have seen him and also why I was left for 3 days to worry about what was wrong with me. He instantly then began to say to me that I could not speak to him so I asked why not?

He then vanished and later I happened to see that on my documentation a note had been added that according to someone I was classed as "verbally abusive" which I think is a lie.

I only became more forceful in my manner after I felt the said medic became rude and showed me disrespect. At no time did I use bad language although at the time it did cross my mind in order to get my point across. I was then informed that apparently the information I was given about our first meeting was incorrect.

And so as I am big enough to admit it when wrong I duly sought out the said consultant and made my apology. However, it was decided that I should be referred to yet another consultant.

However, later that same day I was suddenly whisked off to have a C-T scan and also fitted with a 24 hour trace all in the space of a few hours I also had a Doppler scan. But still I felt like nobody was telling me what was wrong with me. It was only when my wife made enquiries that it turned out she was told that the medics thought I had an internal bleed and that my blood level was so low that another digit lower and I would require an immediate blood transfusion. So I felt like all of this trouble stress and hassle purely because of a serious lack of communication.

I was then told by the CT scan staff to enquire later on that day as to if my scan results were on the ward. Naturally I was still very anxious and probably more so once I was told of the findings/suspicions.

The results arrived but I had to wait to be told by the right person and so yet another uncomfortable and anxious night passed for me.

The following morning I was woken at around 06-00 by the night staff clattering and banging. Having been disturbed in the same manner the previous morning I decided to get up and so I washed, shaved and was ready for the day. At around 09-30 I approached the staff to enquire as to what time roughly the consultants would be on the ward. I desperately wanted to know the results of my head and chest scan.

I felt like some of the staff were continually unpleasant and uncaring to me. I didn't see one person in particular smile and did not even acknowledge a morning greeting. Any way I politely asked the question and this person response was "later". I asked if there was any idea as to roughly when the consultants would arrive and the nurse said to me "No I cant". I thought this most odd. So I decided that I would seek the needed info elsewhere and I happened to see a doctor that I had got to know arrive at the end of the ward. This doctor could speak the same language as me so we had several small conversations which was fun for me. This doctor always has a smile and a kind word for everyone and is in my opinion a true credit to the profession.

I was about to politely ask about my scan results when another person appeared who turned out to be the consultant. I felt he barged into the conversation I was having, without any explanation or excuse nor did he at anytime identify himself. I felt unimpressed by his attitude, general manner. I explained that I was having a conversation to do with my medical condition to which he was not asked or invited to comment on and he said to me to go back to my ward.

I found this person rude, arrogant and at that point I had had enough and made it clear in plain English that I was not happy. I then turned my back and proceeded in the opposite direction.

I began to pack my belongings and I thought I overheard the staff say to each other just to let me go. At this point I was feeling angry. I still had a cannula attached and no info as regards to my condition.

The nurse then said to me the cannula needs to be taken out. I told the nurse that they would not be doing anything further either for me or to me. The next thing I see are 2 security guards! I thought they were courteous and I explained the trials and events that had transpired.

I also explained that there would certainly be no trouble from my side. And so then another nurse who I knew appeared and feeling that my point had been made I allowed the nurse to remove the cannula.

I was then discharged despite the fact that I had not asked for a discharge and in the company of 2 minders I left the premises.

Needless to say I have transferred my own personal medical affairs to the Royal Oldham Hospital where I hope to find a more professional and caring approach.

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Responses

Response from Philip Dylak, Director of Nursing, Tameside Hospital Foundation Trust

I was very sorry to read these comments and to learn that you have sought treatment at another hospital It is unfortunately difficult to comment on this particular case without the benefit of further details. If you would care to provide me with your name or hospital number I would be happy to look further into the issue you raise and respond to you. Philip Dylak Director of Nursing Would you like to help the hospital to improve its services further? We are currently looking for patients and carers to become involved in a development called “Patient Stories”. We want to know more about our services from the point of view of those who received them – what was good, bad, what could be improved, what should be changed. If you want to know more about what’s involved, please contact me by email.
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