About: West Cumberland Hospital

At 8:45pm last night we visited the A & E Department at WCH with my very ill 71 year old mother. She was seen immediately by the A & E Staff who were fantastic in the way they treat her and dealt with her illness. At approximately 11:30pm we were advised that my mother needed to be admitted to hospital for further treatment, however she had to go to Carlisle as there were no surgical doctors on duty at Whitehaven, we were also advised that transport had been arranged and should be with her in approx. 1 hour. When we were told that she was being transferred to Carlisle, I questioned whether she would be going straight to a ward, and was advised that patients were queuing in their A & E Department but the staff did their best to find out where my mother was going. I Finally left my mother at 1:30am this morning as still no transport had arrived to take her to Carlisle. She finally arrived there at approx. 3:50am this morning. At 8AM this morning I telephoned Carlisle Hospital for an update on my mother only to be told that she has spent the night in their A & E Department waiting for a bed, and there was still other patients before here also waiting, she had been seen by a registrar and more information would be available late morning after the doctor had "done his rounds". I am absolutely disgusted that a 71 year old woman (or any patient for that matter) should be transferred 40 miles from one hospital to another at 3am in the morning when there is no services/beds available in the hospital which she is being transferred to. It is only a matter of time before someone loses their lives due to the lack of services being lost from Whitehaven to Carlisle hospitals, it is an utter disgrace and listening to other people this situation is only going to get worse. The management and Executives of these two hospitals seriously need to look at what they are doing to health care in West Cumbria - between them they are totally decimating it in this area. In the event of something serious happening in this area, god only knows what the outcome could be!!!!

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Response from West Cumberland Hospital

I am sorry to hear of this experience of your mother, and much apologise on behalf of the Trust for the distress caused to her and your family. It is clear that we could have done much better to manage her case on this occasion, and I have alerted the teams and their managers to this for them to review and learn lessons for the future. Please contact our PALS service with contact details if you would like a more formal review. They can be contacted on 01228 814008 between 8.30am and 4.30pm Monday to Friday, or by sending an email to PALSCIC@ncuh.nhs.uk. Many thanks for contacting us regarding this. With best wishes Alison Patient Experience

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