"Student Nurse Perspective - COPD"

About: NHS Scotland

(as a staff member),

Reading patients experiences has opened my eyes to the positives and negatives of care given to patients who suffer COPD.

Firstly, I noticed lots of negative reports on the care given in a&e. It appeared that most COPD patients go to a&e in the middle of the night and experience long waiting times and often have to wait until morning to see a doctor and be sent home. One patient admitted that they were close to discharging themselves by the time they were seen on ward round.

As the effects of COPD are very distressing for the patient as it is very difficult to breathe, especially in attacks that would make you go to a&e, it is important that care is fast and the symptoms relieved quickly to calm the patient.

This was what the positive reports said: people who were seen quickly with kindness and respect were happy with the care they had received. I therefore wish to be knowledgeable about the symptoms and stresses of long term conditions and treat them as quickly as possible with kindness and respect for the pain and stress they are experiencing.

I also considered that the community night service may have a shorter waiting time than a&e if these services are available in the area, and so I would make patients aware of how to get in contact with them.

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