"Surgery for Miscarriage"

About: Dorset County Hospital / General surgery

(as the patient),

Last year, we sadly had an ultrasound  which showed our baby's heart had stopped beating. This was devasting news for us. The staff at the EPAC were amazing though, giving us time to just cry and to decide what to do next.

We received an appointment for surgery later that day for 2 days time.

However it was here the good care and appreciation for our situation stopped.

On admission to day surgery, the staff did not seem to have a clue as to why we were there and were very jolly in their 'so what can we do for you today ' welcome. Due to a complication, we were kept waiting for 6 hours for my surgery. This wait was then extended when I had to wait in the 'holding area' outside surgery with staff moaning that they didn't know about my allergy and that they had to prep a different theatre. Whilst I was waiting two members of staff came and looked at my notes whilst enquiring to each other why I was there. On discovering that I was waiting for surgery for a miscarriage proceeded to discuss bio-waste disposal bags. This is not something someone who was upset and nervous needed to hear, as it certainly wasn't how I originally saw my baby leaving the hospital.

After the surgery I received no proper discharge as the day surgery staff passed me off to another ward, who didn't seem to know what to do with me or what information to give me to let me go home. So after tea and biscuits I was forced to just leave, being told to phone in a couple of days if my discharge letter wasn't sent to me.

I did phone and was rudely told I wouldn't get one 'for what you had done anyway' trivialising an already distressing time. I still to this day have not received anything, and when visiting my doctor in December they were not aware of my miscarriage.

I feel that despite the amazing staff at the EPAC, our experience was completely let down by the surgery staff. We were made to feel like we were a hassle to the operating staff and there was no understanding shown of what we were going through.

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Response from Ruth Bender Atik, National Director, The Miscarriage Association

I am so sorry to read about the loss of your baby last year.

It is very sad to read about your experience of having surgical management, especially the lack of empathy, understanding and compassion when those were sorely needed. That can only have added to your distress.

I do hope that key people in the surgical team take note of your feedback. It sounds as if they could really learn from the example of the EPAC staff.

Best wishes


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Response from Dorset County Hospital

I am sorry to read of your experience and I know that the Day Surgery team will also be very concerned at your distress and upset.

They pride themselves on delivering care in line with our Trust values and I am very sorry that this was not the case for you.

I will share your post with the Day Surgery team, but I also urge you to get in contact with us on 0800 7838058 or pals@dchft.nhs.uk, so we can understand what happened and learn from your experience.

Kind regards, Sarah Silverton, Patient & Public Experience Lead, Dorset County Hospital

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