"An Embarrassment to Your Hospital"

About: The Royal London Hospital

I'm a 28 year-old professional who sought care after having 3 months of symptoms. Here's what happened:

NP: What do you want to happen here? You're sick...

What an awkward, embarrassing way to make someone feel welcome. Please note that I'm not an individual who goes to a doctor for every little thing. I haven't been prescribed antibiotics or been to a doctor for cold symptoms for about 13 years. I've always tried to manage my symptoms on my own and have always thought as the doctor/emergency room as the last resort. When someone comes in to indicate that their chest/side side is comparable to getting stabbed repetitively as they are coughing/moving around/breathing, I would hope that my NP would have a bit more respect. I also indicated that my heart hurt a little last night, to which they responded it wasn't my heart. They could be correct, but continued to make a mockery of me.


In response to me being sick since October. NP: Uh huh, this is London. You're not in Canada.

The NP seemed very concerned over the fact that I was not from London.

Why does that matter? It was obvious they were categorizing patients and labelling them, as the NP continued to metaphorically roll their eyes. If they were not, it certainly felt that way. How degrading. The NP proceeded to blame London for my sickness and without saying it in exact words, told me to accept it. The NP was pretty lucky that the time I arrived in London coincided with the time I began to get sick. Matches their thesis perfectly.

- In response to me requesting to get a chest X-ray instead of continuing to go on hesitation and assumptions. NP: I just told you what it is. Are you listening to me?

That's funny, because you haven't done anything but check my blood pressure and heartbeat. Assumptions are what got me into this mess in the first place.

- In response to me indicating that I've been taking ibuprofen a few times a day and it's not helping. NP: Then that could be making it worse. You're taking too much.

By this point of the consultation, I'm fairly certain that if I had said I'm taking its once a day, they would have blamed it on not taking enough.

- In response to my GP's prescription. NP: I wouldn't have given you medicine for bronchitis. How do u know it's the medicine that's helped you? It could be just your body.

This antibiotic is the first thing in 3 months that has gotten me remotely better... Wait.. Are you questioning another doctor's diagnosis? Out loud? Have you been listening to me? I tried to leave it alone for 3 months. I don't appreciate being accused of being a medicine junkie.

- In response to me indicating that I've been trying to be good by using things such as hand sanitizer. NP: That could be "it" too. You're probably using too much.

That's it, I'm going somewhere else.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from The Royal London Hospital

It is really disappointing to read your experience of your visit to our Emergency Service. We are very sorry that you were not happy with the care you received by the practitioner who attended to you, and that your consultation did not address your healthcare concerns.

We really value your feedback and have passed this over to the Matron of the Emergency Department so that they are aware of this and it does not happen in future.

The Matron would value the opportunity to discuss your experience further and would appreciate you providing contact details via the PALS team to facilitate an investigation into your experience.

Thank you for raising your concerns with us.

Please contact our PALS Team on 020 3594 2040 or by email: pals@bartshealth.nhs.uk

Kind regards

Barts Health NHS Trust

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