"Very Poor Post Operative Help - Do not have..."

About: Moorfields Eye Hospital (City Road)

Most reviews focus on the ability of the doctors and surgeons and the cleanliness of the hospital, which I wouldn't dispute - although Moorfields is actually doing no more in this area than all NHS hospitals should. However, Moorfields does not provide any significant post operative support to it's patients, even in very urgent cases. This will not be apparent immediately after your operation because you will be given the number of the ward and a 24/7 contact number which you can telephone if anything goes wrong. What they will not explain though is that if you need treatment - or to be checked in case you need treatment - the only thing that they will do is tell you to attend their A and E unit - where you will be treated as though they have never seen you before and know nothing about your case, even if you give them your hospital number on arrival. I was a retinal detachment patient and experienced a dangerous and painful rise in pressure in my eye, with attendant nausea. This turned out to be caused by the prescribed eye drops. It's a known and dangerous side effect in a minority of patients but no follow up monitoring is undertaken - hence the pressure had built up in my eye over the first week of use. I telephoned the contact number on my discharge papers at 12.30 lunchtime and was advised to go to hospital. I was expressly told that I had to present through A and E and the ward or Vitreo Retinal Emegency Service would not see me. The nurse suggested my local A and E as an alternative, but said she had no idea if they had an eye unit - so I had better come to Moorfields. I had no one to escort me and was left to travel across London alone, with no vision in my left eye, in pain and with nausea. Moorfields did not even offer to contact my local hospital, find out if they had an Opthalmologist on duty or otherwise refer me. On arrival at the hospital I was not helped or reassured but made to go through the same registration process, triage, and eye chart reading as every other patient. In spite of the fact that the staff nurse on my ward had decided that the intervention needed was a pressure check on my eyes. I arrived at about 3PM and only had the pressure in my eyes checked at 5PM and drugs given to deal with it at 5.15. The pressure in my operated eye was 3 times normal and their post-operative care amounted to providing treatment 2 hours after I arrived and nearly five hours after I telephoned. I needed to wait for two hours after the drugs were administered so after seeing the surgeon at 7.15 (the only good part of this whole experience) I was left to go home by myself with no one asking if I was okay to travel or needed help. The advice ringing in my ears was that if anything else went wrong don't hesitate to come back........to casualty. M

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Response from Moorfields Eye Hospital (City Road)

I'm very sorry to hear about this. I will pass your comments on to our post-operative team. I would also suggest that you contact our patient advice and liaison service (PALS) who will be able to look into the case in more detail and work with the service to ensure that we learn from mistakes and prevent these sort of problems arising for other patients. You can contact the PALS team via email to pals@moorfields.nhs.uk.

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