"My visit to A&E!"

About: Scunthorpe General Hospital

I attended the A&E dept on the advice of my GP, as a 999 GP referral. I had been experiencing near constant palpitations with chest pain and shortness of breath. On arrival my husband informed one of the two receptionists of the situation and that I also have a cardiac history. The receptionist asked the other receptionist how to mark me down. The receptionist was told to put me down as a GP admittance and to inform the nursing staff that I was there. This information was not passed on to the nursing staff!

We were told to take a seat in the waiting area.

Some 40 minutes later my name was called by the triage nurse. On hearing of my predicament the nurse immediately started the appropriate examinations and tests. The nurse could not hide their dismay over how long I had waited, although the nurse didn't mention anything to us. Thankfully, after several tests and several hours i was deemed fit enough to be discharged to await the results of a previous cardiac MRI. But I could have been having a heart attack, and I could have died!

I am under the impression that all of the staff in the A&E dept from the receptionists to the highest doctors and nurses are trained to recognise and prioritise what could be potentially life threatening conditions! But surely chest pain on its own should be treated as a life threatening emergency! I am deeply concerned that an error like this could happen! There should be no difference between a patient arriving via ambulance or any other means, chest pain is an emergency!

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Scunthorpe General Hospital

Hello, thank you for your comments about your A&E experience. If you'd like this to be looked into further, please can I suggest you contact our patient advice and liaison team on 01724 290132 or email nlg-tr.pals@nhs.net

Many thanks

Sarah Mainprize

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