"my accident"

About: Scottish Ambulance Service / Emergency Ambulance Victoria Hospital / Trauma & orthopaedics

(as the patient),

What know we of harbours,

Who sail not on the sea.

I’m not sure who that is attributed to, but the same could be said about hospitals.

Black Friday for me fell on April 17th. It was early afternoon and the morning had been a long and tiring one, I was within a few hundred yards of home looking forward to being out of my sticky clothing and under a refreshing shower, followed by a welcoming cup of tea. One of the bags I was carrying broke loose and was heading for the road, my reaction rather than conscious decision was to grab for the bag, next moment I was lying in the roadway and in a great deal of pain, I knew instantly I had broken my leg, I cursed myself for being so stupid.

A Good Samaritan arrived and called for an ambulance and when it arrived two young industrial athletes went into action assessing my condition and firing questions at me ten to the dozen. Clearly I could not, as they wished me to do, turn onto my bum so laughing gas was administered and I was soon efficiently wheeled into the rear of the ambulance by these two professional girls.

My destination Kirkcaldy and the new hospital there once assessed at the reception I was transferred onto a bed in a waiting area. My first thoughts a four hour waiting time, still I was comfortable, warm and surrounded by professionals and given a button to press if I required assistance. Constantly over the next couple of hours I would be asked “Name, Address, DOB” clearly I was in some sort of queue and being attended to. A little under two hours later I was wheeled into ex-ray and my worst fears were realised, this was no cold compress and a couple of aspirins, I had three breaks in my lower leg, two on one bone, one on the other, however they were clean and no bones protruding from my legs, it could have been worse.

After a half cast was fitted to my lower leg I was taken to my well appointed room and a team of dedicated staff fussed over me throughout the remainder of the day and into the night, they could not have done more.

On saturday, I was introduced to the surgeon that would be doing the work on my leg, and since the swelling was minimal he would like to do his work that morning, rather than risk swelling than having to wait possibly weeks until the swelling subsided. I joked that this was Saturday and didn’t all the doctors and surgeons go off on a Friday afternoon to play golf and not return until Monday morning? That is what the politicians will tell you but people still have appendicitis, babies and accidents over the weekend and we are here for them.

With a pin inserted down the inside of my bone and a couple of plates inserted the leg was set in a cast up to my knee so no long weeks of immobility by Tuesday I was able to go home.

I am sure there are difficulties in the NHS but none of this will show on the surface, these people are professionals with a Capital P. so my question to is to certain MSPs, “Why would you wish to turn this enormously loved and well respected institution into a professional football team? ”

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Response from Louise Ewing, Patient Relations Manager, NHS Fife

picture of Louise Ewing

Dear seasaw

Thank you for taking the time to tell us about your recent experience. I was sorry to hear that your attempt to retrieve your bag left you injured and pained. I do hope you are now feeling better!

They say that every cloud has a silver lining and it was great to hear of the good samaritan coming to your rescue and even better to hear about the way the ambulance crew and hospital staff dealt with you thereafter.

Your description suggests that you felt safe and cared for in hospital and clearly details the professionalism of the staff with whom you came into contact. It also describes eloquently the efficient way in which your care was planned and provided. Again, this is exactly what we aim to achieve - safe, effective and person centered care.

I will be glad to share your positive feedback and would like to be able to do so more directly if you were able to identify the Consultant you were under and the ward you were in. Please do get back to me if you wish me to do so.

In the meantime, wishing you a speedy recovery.

Kind Regards

Louise Ewing

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Response from Martin Esposito, Patient Experience Manager, Corporate Affairs and Engagement Department, Scottish Ambulance Service

picture of Martin Esposito

Dear seesaw

Was very sorry to read about your accident but really pleased to read about the treatment you received from everyone within the NHS. Your experience is a great example of the care that is being provided 24 hours a day, seven days a week throughout the country.

Glad to hear that you are already on the road to recovery and thank you so much for sharing your story

Take care


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