"Not impressed with doctor's care at Tameside A&E"

About: Tameside General Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as the patient),

I attended A&E after my ankle gave way going up concrete stairs and I went down on my knee. My knee ballooned to double it's size and into the shape of an egg. The bruising came out straight away. My ankle was also swollen and very painful with 2 numb toes so I went to A&E.

I first saw the triage nurse who was very surprised I could put weight on it but could see how much pain I was in. She advised that she could not give me strong pain relief, but would get me a cubicle so the Dr could give me something strong to help. Within ten mins, I was called in and sat in a cubicle. I then waited for 1 hour before a doctor came and gave me any pain relief. By this point I was in agony. He said I had to go for an x-ray of the ankle and knee, as he was concerned about the swelling.

I waited for nearly an hour before a porter came (with no wheel chair) to walk me around the corner for the x-ray. I was then asked to wait back in the main waiting room. I sat there for 90 mins, watching people going in and out but my name was not being called. Then a nurse came out with 2 boxes of tablets, one was strong pain relief, the other was anti-inflammatory tablets. She sat next to me in the waiting room and said, take these tablets and then go back to your G.P. if you need any more. I said to her that I took it there was nothing broken? and there was nothing that could be done about the severe pain. She asked if the doctor had not explained what was happening. I replied no, as I had not seen the doctor. She shook her head and said please wait here. She went in then returned ten mins later, she could not apologise enough and said the doctor thought that he did not need to see me because nothing was broken and that I should just go home and take pain relief. She was also shocked because my leg needed a strong supported strapping and crutches, as I could not straighten my leg.

I am still in agony with my knee front and back but I was not offered a follow up appointment or anything... The nurses were fantastic nurses, but I was not impressed with the doctor.

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Response from Lindsay Stewart, Deputy Director of Nursing, Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for taking the time and trouble to feedback your experiences of Tameside A&E.

It is disappointing you were asked to walk to x-ray. This must have been very painful, but also, the risk of you suffering further injury or making the existing injury worse simply should not have been taken and I am very concerned and sorry that this happened.

When you are in our care you must be able to trust us to stop you coming to any further harm and we are taking a very serious view on this matter and will be attempting to find out which nurse was in charge of the department at the time so they can reflect on your experience.

The delays you experienced between various treatments and investigations are slightly more understandable, although we try hard to reduce this due to the inconvenience on yourself

On 22nd April we saw 261 patients – this exceeded a more usual average of 200 patients. The department was extremely full on both 21st and 22nd April and I think some delays were inevitable, although regrettable. When things are pressured, some doctors start to hurry to see the next patient, and while this does keep waiting times down, it is a less than satisfactory experience for those they have just treated. I apologise for the lack of proper discussion with you in relation to your discharge.

I am glad that nursing staff acted in your best interests at the end of your treatment.

In relation to your concern about not being offered a follow up appointment, the doctor who saw you would have automatically written to your GP and advised that he follow things up. It is rare and unusual for patients to be asked to come back to A&E after treatment and conditions such as you have described usually resolve after a period of rest and pain killers. If however your knee is still very painful, we would urge you to go to your GP to check that the healing process is taking place as it should.

Thank you again for raising these issues with us. We take patient concerns very seriously and we can only improve if we know what is going wrong from a patient’s perspective.

Kind regards

John Goodenough

Director of Nursing

’Would you like to help the hospital to improve its services further? We are currently looking for patients and carers to become involved in a development called “Patient Stories”. We want to know more about our services from the point of view of those who received them – what was good, bad, what could be improved, what should be changed. Want to know more about what’s involved? Please contact John Goodenough, Director of Nursing at


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