"Lack of triage causes long wait and frustration"

About: Cambourne Redruth Community Hospital

I visited Minor Injuries the other day after stitches in my leg opened up and I couldn't stop the bleeding. Unfortunately, due to a shortage of staff, it didn't open that day until 1 pm. I arrived at 1:05 pm, and I was behind a long queue of people. They seem to have now combined the Minor Injuries with the Urgent Care Walk-In Clinic, and I just hope that they will separate the two once Cardrew closes. The reason? There was no one doing triage so patients were seen in order of arrival, not in order of importance. It meant that the elderly gentleman, who had an ache in his shoulder for a few weeks but who couldn't get an appointment with his GP, and the teenager, whose mum said that he'd had a rash on and off since October and had run out of his cream but also couldn't get in to see the GP, were seen before me while I waited and bled all over the place. I was bleeding so much that one of the unit's assistants came out and place an absorbent mat under my leg to catch the blood! And the couple who were sat opposite me were worried because I began to lose colour and was a bit faint. But still, everyone was seen in order of arrival. I probably would have been better driving all the way to Treliske because at least they actually do have triage there and you are seen in order of importance. Once I was finally seen, the nurse was lovely. It's just a shame that the unit is so disorganised at the moment. I'd like to say that I would come back again, but with Cardrew closing and more people coming to the Urgent Care Clinic, I'm more likely to just head to Treliske, rather than use the hospital that's only 5 minutes from my home.

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Response from Cambourne Redruth Community Hospital

On this day , the unit did not open until 1pm due to a reduced staffing situation. We apologise for this and did everything we could in exploring all options to try and reduce the risk of closure before this decision was made. This was a rare occasion of closure during these hours.

Notices of apology were in place for the public and all key appropriate persons were informed.

On this day as the staff arrived, there was a queue of people waiting to be seen who had been waiting before the opening time.

Many patients had been booked in prior to this patient with the first at 12.59hrs.Unfortunately by the time all were booked in, there was already some delay. We are aware that we currently do not have a formal triage but this is something that will be addressed within the service development when additional staff will be available to support this.

We have discussed this incident with staff on duty that day and although they do not recall all of this specifically, the nurses and doctor on duty did endeavour to see people as quickly as possible and it is noted that when this lady was seen by the doctor, the wound was allocated to be reviewed by the nurse and there was no indication of excessive blood loss.

We apologise if this had caused some distress or discomfort whilst waiting in the waiting area and had we had a triage nurse, it is likely that a temporary dressing would have been applied although the patient may still have had to wait to be seen. It is noted that she was booked into the unit at 13.29, was seen at 14.07 and discharged at 14.36hrs.She was asked to come back for a review the following day with the doctor which she did and was booked in and seen within 6 minutes..

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