"Early hours in orange zone"

About: Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital

(as the patient),

I was admitted to nsech by ambulance. I was taken to a room straight away, where an ecg and bloods were done straight away.

Shortly afterwards I was moved to Orange zone, where myself and my husband spent the rest of the night. From 1: 30 am til 7: 30 am, we saw no one apart from a quick BP check and temperature check.

The problem I have is, why no water in the bays? We were both thirsty and it would be a nice touch.

Also, please pass on to staff, that for patients who are feeling unwell, listening to staff screaming and laughing about their social lives is not restful or professional. I realise that some noise is inevitable in a&e, but please pass on that it is easy to speak in hushed tones. I am sure it will make the patients feel like they can rest.

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››


Response from Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital

Dear Jazz,

I am sorry to hear about your experience within our Emergency Department (ED) – this is not the standard of care we want any of our patients to receive.

The wait in the ED can be for various reasons; it should have been explained to you as to why you were waiting so long to be seen. If you would like me to look into this further for you please could you email your details and the date of your attendance to patient.experience@northumbria-healthcare.nhs.uk and I can refer it to the appropriate department, who would be able to investigate in more detail.

I agree it must have been very frustrating to not have access to water; water is not as easily accessible in the ED as there are a number of tests that patients may need that require them not to drink anything. However water is available on request, as there are water machines in each zone in the department. It is not acceptable for the staff to be talking and laughing loudly during the night even on an emergency department and I am sorry that you were disturbed by this noise, I will ensure this gets passed onto the staff so it can be addressed and try prevent it happening in the future.

I look forward to hearing from you,

Kind Regards,


Jessica Mallach – Head of Quality Improvement and Patient Experience