"Genuinely awful. Rude unhelpful staff."

About: Barnet General Hospital

I'd taken my 18 month old daughter to the GP who was so concerned they'd telephoned A paediatrician at Barnet who had said to bring her in immeadiately.

When I arrived at reception the reception sighed and asked 'did I really need to be there?'

When they saw the referral note the GP had written they were a little more co-operative.

Whilst waiting a man came in on crutches with a plastered leg and arm. He fell right over on the floor. Not one member of staff went to help him.

I'd had to bring my 3 year old son along, who had chicken pox a few weeks earlier, but still had a few scabs remaining.

A nurse walked past and sneered that I didn't need to be in A & E with chicken pox. . . Right.

After an hour and a half we were triaged by a very abrupt and rude nurse. They took one look at my son and also said I didn't need to be in A and E with chicken pox and that I should have told them when I first came in as now all the chairs and toys would have to be cleaned and disinfected.

I explained that;

a) My daughter was the reason we were here

b) as my son had fully scabbed over weeks ago, he was no longer contagious.

They told me sometimes the GP 'didn't know what they were doing'.

Back to the waiting room but weren't allowed to touch anything. My son needed the loo, when we came out we were told off like naughty children. Apparently he should have used a bottle. They announced over the loud speaker that no one was to use the toilet until it had been decontaminated. Everyone stared at us, it was really embarrassing. Especially as my son was not contagious!

After 3.5 hours of waiting with 2 toddlers who weren't allowed to move or play like the other children they were getting restless.

A third nurse asked me irritatedly if I couldn't have left my 3 year old son at home?!

People who came in after us were seen ahead of us with such 'urgent' complaints as a sprained ankle, constipation a sore throat.

After 4 hours still hadn't been seen so I discharged myself/ my daughter. I borrowed some money so that I could see a private paediatrician who saw us 15 minutes after me making the phone call.

I'm lucky I had that option, dread to think what would have happened if I'd stayed there.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Barnet General Hospital

Thank you for your review, we're really sorry to hear about your experience. We would like to look in to this and would be grateful if you could contact our PALS team on bcfpals@nhs.net or 020 8216 4924.

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