"Quick admittance into the A+E ..."

About: Royal Cornwall Hospital (Treliske)

(as the patient),

What I liked

Quick admittance into the A+E ward, but nothing but bad treatment afterwards.

What could be improved

I was shocked by the low level of care, the rudeness of staff and the seeming lack of any clinical expertise. The nurses in particular were rude and unhelpful - twice actually shouting at me. The doctor who examined me was kind and thorough, but was exhausted and inexperienced.

The consultant who she deferred to barely glanced at my notes and didn't seem to be listening to my answers to his questions.

I was told after being examined that I would be taken to the neurology ward shortly and a neurologist would decide whether I needed a CT scan or not. I was told if not, I could go home that night.

After waiting a further four hours, I was told I would have to wait until morning to see a neurologist, who would then decide whether I needed a CT scan.

During my wait, I was almost entirely ignored, despite regularly losing consciousness. Staff however, didn't seem so overstretched that two nurses and two security staff could not spend forty-five minutes CHATTING to a drunken man who had no symptoms, did not wish to be treated and had asked for a taxi. He was offered tea, coffee and juice and was treated with great courtesy, despite being incredibly rude to staff and his wife.

Meanwhile, my partner was alternately ignored or told off when inquiring about my treatment. When I asked to go home I was shouted at by a second nurse for "wasting NHS resources", and by a doctor (who had not examined me) who said "Get dressed and get out". (Exact quote. Seriously.)

The whole experience left me upset and furious. I had undergone quite a traumatic injury and being badly treated by hospital staff only made it worse.

Anything else?

I was shocked by how long it took to get an ambulance - half an hour to see a paramedic in a car, then a further half an hour waiting for an ambulance to transport me to hospital.

The ambulance was called at 5.20pm, and I left the A+E at 11.45pm. In this entire time I was not offered so much as a glass of water. One of the reasons I wanted to go home was because I was hungry and thirsty.

Had I received a modicum of courtesy and respect, I would have stayed in the hospital and awaited treatment.

As it was, I felt that the best course of action was to go home and seek an outpatient appointment at the nearby and excellent Cambourne and Redruth Hospital.

Story from NHS Choices

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