"Would rather die than risk being anywhere near..."

About: Royal Lancaster Infirmary

Extremely distressing symptoms triggered my GP to refer me to the Ambulatory care ward. A couple of tests and then told all ok can return home. Symptoms continued so husband called hospital to query decision. Told that decision correct despite deteriorating condition. Condition continued to decline, husband calls OOH GP. Told I would be fine if hospital had already seen me. Husband contacted consultant at other hospital familiar with my case. Consultant (at 11pm at night) said I must be admitted locally (Lancaster) as too ill to travel the 120 mile road journey to his hospital. Husband and I - no idea what we are meant to do other than await my eventual loss of consciousness and phone for ambulance. Spent entire night extremely distressed and in extensive pain, thinking I would indeed be leaving home in an undertakers bag. Longest night ever, got through it, semi conscious by morning. Husband called GP as last bid attempt to access appropriate healthcare. The result was GP organising urgent transfer to the hospital 120 miles away.Was too ill to be transported by road so the was collected by paramedic ambulance and transported to the helipad at none other than Royal Lancaster Infirmary! I was then airlifted to the hospital where they wanted to admit me. Very grateful to my wonderful GP, NWAS and North West Air Ambulance and the hospital that took care of me. So distressed by the problems with Lancaster hospital that I will indeed ensure that if I am in urgent need of help will stay at home rather than run the risk of being taken to my local hospital. I don't know what else to say as this and a couple of other unpleasant experiences (recently, may I add. I have attended the hospital for a few years now and have always found them to be brilliant. I think some recent staff changes could be amongst the problem. What a shame) with RLI have left me so dismayed I have absolutely zero trust in the hospital or the hospital trust. Maybe acute services should be ceased at this hospital. I could have been treated at the earliest point to save deterioration but the common theme now seems to be that don't go to hospital until you are absolutely on your last legs as any attempt to access care at a sensible pre-emptive juncture is in vain. I have always been told not to wait until the last minute, go early rather than later, it is more controlled and is likely to reduce your admission length. In my experiences, early presentation leads to more problems than anything else. The benefit of waiting until passing out and calling for help as your face is about to hit the floor is that at least if you arrive not breathing they have to treat you, hopefully!

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Response from Royal Lancaster Infirmary

We are extremely concerned to read this comment and would like the opportunity to investigate the circumstances and respond directly to you. We’d therefore be very grateful if you could contact our Patient Experience team on 01538 795497 as soon as possible to allow us to carry out this investigation.

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