"Very unsatisfactory"

About: Royal Stoke University Hospital

My husband was taken into A & E at University Hospital. He managed to send a text to me to advise that he was there. When I received the text I duly rang A & E and only on the fourth occasion managed to get through to somebody to take my call. On every other occasion the phone just rang and rang and then cut off dead. When I did speak to them the persons English was not the best. I explained that I needed to come and asked what the position was. He asked who I was and who I was calling about and then came back to me to advise that my husband had been discharged and should be at home. This was not the case as my husband was still there. I do not appreciate being given false information and unduly lied to. I am not happy with the service as my husband was apparently worried and waiting for me to turn up to be with him. Obviously an unpleasant experience and a complete mix up.

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Response from University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust

Dear ‘Anonymous’,

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback of visiting the Emergency Department at University Hospital of North Staffordshire.

Emergency Department Matron, Kevin Parker and Business Support Manager for the Emergency Department, Dianne Garratt would like to apologise for the service both yourself and your husband received. It is in no way acceptable and is certainly not what we expect relatives to experience when calling to enquire about a loved one.

We have looked into what happened, and unfortunately it would appear that your phone call got put through to an area within the Emergency Department rather than our main reception desk. As a result, Ms Diane Garratt is working with the operators and reception team, to ensure that phone calls are streamlined as timely as possible and then redirected to the most appropriate person to ensure the least amount of distress for the patients and/or relative. We would expect all staff who cannot help to do so in a polite courteous manner and this has been reiterated to the team.

Both Matron Parker and Ms Garratt would again like to apologise for the unnecessary distress caused to both yourself and your husband.

Best wishes,

Matron, Kevin Parker

Response from Trust HQ

Dear Anonymous Staff in the Emergency Department strive to provide the best experience possible for patients and relatives and we apologise that in this instance, this was not the case. The importance of accurate information giving to relatives and patients will be reiterated to all staff. Thank you for bringing the matter to our attention. Alison Hopwood Deputy Matron Emergency Department

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