"Emergency Dept needs to re-think children's..."

About: Royal Preston Hospital

Attended the Emergency Department at approx. 9.20am today when my 4 year old son who had trapped his finger in a door partially amputating the tip of his ring finger on his right hand. Automatic doors to the Children's A&E were locked - no sign telling you this, a kind ambulance driver opened his door and shouted at me to use the Adult's entrance! I informed the receptionist over his shoulder that his finger was barely hanging on and we needed to see someone asap - she smiled and continued asking me my mobile number, GP details etc, etc - then asked me to walk round the back and into the waiting area where I would be called. All my son had was a piece of kitchen towel over his finger - luckily I had given him 7.5mls of Calpol before we left the house so he seemed to be in no pain. He was however bleeding quite badly and eventually we were called in. Triage nurse asked what had happened and I explained his finger was hanging off and her words were "And how do we know this" - Erm look at it! She took the kitchen towel off and said "Oh dear yes, let's get some gauze on that" - we were told he would be seen by the Nurse Practitioner but would need an x-ray to exclude any bone damage. Sent back to the waiting room, only a few minutes wait and we were taken for an x-ray. No bone damage and x-ray staff as always were great. Back to see the Nurse Practitioner. She was brilliant, really good with my son and he took to her straight away - she took the gauze away, which was stuck to his finger and asked "Did the triage nurse not put any water on this?" - No she didn't!! Luckily she got the gauze off and put numerous steri-strips on, wrapped it in a gauze and put a bandage on! Brilliant. Well deserved bacon sandwich and a calm down in the hospital cafe! Wound opened up again and was dripping blood before we had finished our sandwich - back to A&E and in to see Louise, Nurse Practitioner who took the dressing off and re-dressed the wound all the time chatting away. Off for ice cream and they asked if Jack could bring her some- 20 minutes later we took them a pot of ice cream and a cuddle from a happy 4 year old to say thank you. My first point is: Put a sign on the door, if I was running, I would have run straight into the locked automatic doors! Second: I told the receptionist that he had partially amputated his finger and we were still sent to sit in the waiting room for at least 15 minutes before being seen. Third: I work at RPH and have done so for almost 7 years, my son is at ease in a hospital and was really brave today but I felt really let down by the hospital I work in every day. Four: On arrival and having been booked in by reception, a nurse should have been asked to look at the severity of the injury and the appropriate dressing put on to ensure his finger could be preserved - not to mention ensuring he had been given pain relief. Five: Thank you the Nurse Practitioner for restoring my faith.

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Response from Royal Preston Hospital

Thank you for your feedback, we hope your son is now on the mend. Your comments have been noted and will be reviewed to identify opportunities for improvement and any actions that may be necessary. If you would like to provide further details, or would like a personal response, please email customer.care@lthtr.nhs.uk, or you can speak with our PALS team on 01772 522972.

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