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"This has totally put me off attending sick kids A&E again"

About: Royal Hospital for Children (Glasgow) / Accident & Emergency

(as a service user),

I understand the nhs is very busy, I myself work for the nhs, I know how busy it is. However, I do not think it is appropriate to speak to me as a parent like I am an idiot and raise a voice at me. This was my experience today in the RHC.

The nurse in the triage room at approx 1400 came out with a syringe of apple juice and proceeded to tell me I had to get my daughter to take it (impossible she refuses a syringe and tries to breathe in the liquid) upon trying to explain this to the nurse, they told me her dad and I were not trying hard enough to help our child. I explained it may be easier if I had somewhere appropriate to sit my child as she had a fever and was sitting on our knees getting hotter for 2 hours. The nurse then said there’s no space and they’re too busy (understandable) but being busy does not mean you lack compassion and empathy for parents or kids.

The manner in which I was spoken to was very degrading and made me feel like a terrible mum and I ended up crying in the waiting area with all the other parents looking at me which then triggered a panic attack. I have never complained once about treatment received at hospital the RHC and QEUH are usually fantastic but today has totally put me off attending again.  

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Response from Coral McGowan, Patient Services Manager, Women & Children's Services, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde 2 months ago
Coral McGowan
Patient Services Manager, Women & Children's Services,
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde
Submitted on 16/09/2021 at 13:31
Published on Care Opinion at 13:31

picture of Coral McGowan

Dear Neededhelp1

We were so sorry that your experience of care within our Emergency Department was disappointing. Working within the NHS yourself, you will be aware that we continually strive to provide patient and family centred care at every given opportunity.

It is our strongest belief that the very best clinical outcome for children is achieved when our teams work in partnership with our parents, and this means mutual respect. If we have raised our voice, this was wrong and we unreservedly apologise for your experience. We will reflect on this with our team members.

We note your comments regarding compassion and empathy, and again we will appropriately review this with our team. Our services are particularly busy at this time, however, we offer this only by way of acknowledging all you have said, and not by any way as an excuse.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your feedback. By providing comment back when we haven't got things right, we can reflect on the service we are providing and make improvements for the future, we are therefore grateful to you.

We hope your wee girl is now feeling much better.

Take care

Coral on behalf of Hospital Paediatrics and Neonatology

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Response from Mandy Meechan, Lead Nurse, Paediatrics, Royal Hospital for Children 2 months ago
Mandy Meechan
Lead Nurse, Paediatrics,
Royal Hospital for Children
Submitted on 16/09/2021 at 16:43
Published on Care Opinion at 16:43

Dear Neededhelp1,

I was very sorry to hear about your experience whilst attending our ED with your child. I will discuss the incident with the Senior nurse in the Emergency Department who will reflect on this episode with the team.

Please accept my apologies on behalf of the department and if you wish to contact me further regarding the incident, my email address is,

Thank you for your feedback to enable us to continue to make improvements within our service.

Kind Regards


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