"An 83 year old's visit to Accident & Emergency"

About: Fairfield General Hospital

My 83 year old mother suffered a severe prolonged nose bleed resulting in overflow bleeding from her eyes.

I contacted BARDOC who, given that by this time she had been bleeding for well over an hour, despite following the advice on NHS Direct, arranged for an ambulance

The excellent paramedics on arrival found her to be hypertensive with tachycardia and told her that she needed to go to A & E.

We arrived at Fairfield at 11.15pm, more than two hours since the onset of her nose bleed.

Following a brief triage our long wait started - we sat in the waiting room - my mother tired and weak in bloody nightclothes, until 6am when we were finally called through to the Holy Grail behind the closed door.

Whilst I understand that A & E prioritises the most sick, given the lack of checks on the patients who had been sitting there for so many hours, one wonders if this system actually works.

Those working remained behind closed doors, there was absolutely no communication, explanation or apology to anyone.

The receptionist was the only available person to talk to.

Given that they did not seem to know what was going on save for the fact that we had all been waiting for far too long, it appears that the lack of communication from the staff behind the closed doors extended to their colleague too.

Yes, Fairfield certainly breached its waiting times for a significant number of patients, this might not have been avoidable in some cases, but a little care and communication would have made a difference .

Had any of the patients had the misfortune of their condition deterioting rapidly, this lack of communication and care could have resulted in something far more serious.

The medical staff were very caring and attentive once you reached the other side of the door.

I am not sure how to resolve the problem with the health service but I think Pennine has a lot of work to do to bring the trust hospitals up to the level of the better hospitals in the region.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Fairfield General Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to leave your comments. We apologise that on this occasion we did not meet your needs.

We strive at all times to deliver the highest possible standard of care. We will use your comments to make improvements and forward your comments to the relevant area.


The Pennine Acute NHS Trust

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