"In A and E frustrating and exhausting; on the..."
About: Wythenshawe Hospital Wythenshawe Hospital Manchester M23 9LT
What I liked
Two member's of my family, a toddler and an elderly gentleman with a terminal condition have been admitted to the hospital this year. The treatment and care of both on the wards was good.
The treatment of the elderly patient in A and E fell short of acceptable. Overall we were in A and E for 6 hours much of it on hard seats in the waiting area, this despite a GP referral. The GP had rung ahead to request a bed. I appreciate that emergency medicine is a difficult area to manage, but this does not excuse staff not introducing themselves or explaining what and why they are doing things. Coming into a cubicle stating I'm doing your blood pressure and then another nurse stating I need bloods is not respecting the patient as an individual. Nor are discarded bandages from a previous occupant of the cubicle being on the floor under the bed acceptable. What a relief when the ward manager arrived with a smile on her face addressed the patient by name and introduced herself, little things really do count.
Incidentally the information displayed on screen in A and E contains a number of basic errors ( I had several hours to digest the information content ) take a look such errors do not inspire confidence if care is not taken in one area maybe it is not in others ( hence discarded dressings) e.g. one of the errors ' are consultants are ' instead of our consultants are.
Again I do appreciate A and E is difficult to manage and I am sure stressful for staff I did however feel on this occasion things could have been managed far better.
What could be improved
At Leighton Hospital my grandchild was taken straight to an assessment ward following a GP referral, why does this not happen at this Hospital? Better by far for the patient and releases capacity in A and E.
Refer none emergencies back to out of hour GP services after triage and/or charge for misuse of the emergency services ( at point of access not from the GP's budget).
The bays in A and E were full due to shortage of beds on wards, this is not a situation that occurs instantaneously but over a number of hours monitor bed occupancy more closely and respond by opening up wards before blockages occur. Mathematical modelling of bed use should allow for reasonably accurate prediction and best value use of resources.