"Experience of A&E visit on 10/3/2013"

About: Sunderland Royal Hospital

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I accompanied my 88 year old Mother to A&E as she had major swelling and pain in her knee.

I explained to the staff that she had a similar problem ast year which had been diagnosed by her GP as gout, I was quickly told this was unlikely and that a blood test would be done. A long wait ensued until the blood test and result was received and then a further wait for an x ray and another wait to see a Doctor from the Orthopaedic Unit who decided admission was required and the fluid should be withdrawn from the knee.

In all my Mother spent 7 hours on a trolley with no pillow in severe discomfort, this shows a total lack of care and respect for our elderly people. I would not want to be treated this way and I am realtively young and fit but aged 88 this is a complete disgrace.

Staff new my Mother was diabetic and kept saying she could not eat in case surgery was required. I understand the need for this policy however I do not feel anyone person took control and assessed my Mother to decide on how likely it would ne that surgery would ne needed and also in view of her age and medical problems a much more streamlined procedure should have been undertaken. My brother was so concerned when I phoned him and told him that our Mother was still lying on a trooley after 7 hours that he rang and spoke to a Sister (co-ordinator) on A&E who apologised but said that Mums case had not been straightforward like someone coming in with a broken bone. In my view there in lies the problem if something is not straightforwa it appears assessment and investigation is dome on a piecemeal basis. Why could a blood test and x ray not be done at the same time instead of waiting for a blood result and then an wait for x ray - it does not take a qualified medic / triage to arrive at this conclusion. We were seriously failed by your lack of attention and lack of care which is a common thread on most recent posts. Please someone take responsibility and look at what is happening. I know there are many good staff in A&E doing there best under difficult circumstance but communication and care is definately lacking. People are not leaving these reviews and spending there time to be difficult they are conveying real experiences which need action not apologies to prevent the situations continuing to happen.

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Response from Sunderland Royal Hospital

We are sorry that your mother had a poor experience in our Emergency Department. We would like you to know that we have taken your comment seriously and the concerns you have raised about the level of care have been forwarded to our Head of Patient Safety so that they can further investigate these. If you would like to discuss these concerns with us further, please contact us at corporate.affairs@chsft.nhs.uk

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