"A&E. Fit for purpose?"

About: Russells Hall Hospital

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I suffrered a fall down some stairs while at work. I was seen by a paramedic and then transported to R.H. A&E with acute lower back pain. While on route to hospital I was administered gas to help dull the pain. The ambulance staff continued to give gas until a nurse came out and gave me 5 pills after I had been outside A&E for about 15 minutes. Still in great pain I was then put in a chair and wheeled through to the waiting room. Without any assessment whatsoever of my condition by A&E staff, I was then left for several hours without access to either a drink of water or any further medication for the pain. Eventually when the pain became unbearable I struggled to the receptionists desk and asked for more pain relief. I was told I would have to go through to the assessment rooms. I explained that I would need help and the receptionist said she would get the triage nurse to come and see me. After a further wait of at least 20 minutes I rang my son to bring in some pain killers and take me home. shortly after that the triage nurse came and asked what was wrong. I explained and he got me some more pain killers . I told him that I had rung my son to take me home to which the nurse replied that I should wait as I might need an xray. I expressed my amazement that if someone thought I might need an xray why it had not been arranged in the past 5 hours plus. By this time I was in tears caused by pain and frustration with the fact that I had been dumped and forgotten about. without any examination or explanation. eventually I was seen by a Dr. who examined me and prescribed painkillers and rest, this consultation took less than 5 minutes.

Having arrived at A&E in an ambulance obviously in great pain it is unbelievable to me that I was then abandoned without even a cursory examination by A&E staff.

Recommend Russell's Hall A&E to a friend? I don't think so

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Response from Russells Hall Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to post a comment about your experience at our hospital. We welcome all feedback and would like to assure you that all comments are taken seriously and acted upon as part of our ongoing commitment to improving patient experience.

Accident and Emergency is an extremely busy department – between April 2011 and April 2012 more than 98,000 patients visited A&E. We do, however, aim to see every patient within four hours of their arrival. Despite the often extreme pressure on our emergency team, we do our utmost to offer the very best possible care and we are very sorry to hear you feel you were “dumped”. Every patient who attends A&E by ambulance is triaged (which means they are given an assessment by a trained member of staff) and analgesia is prescribed and administered where appropriate.

Patients with major injuries are triaged first – and in order of priority i.e. the sickest patients and those with life threatening conditions will, and must, be seen first. With current high levels of demand on A&E services across the region, we encourage anyone with a minor illness or concern to first seek advice from their GP who is best placed to deal with such conditions. We need to ensure our A&E is available for emergency patients with life threatening conditions.

Even when our A&E staff are extremely busy, they are always more than happy to help patients who ask for assistance including a drink of water. Please get in touch with our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on free phone 0800 073 0510 if you would like us to look into your concerns in more detail.

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