"Some issues with our emergency department experience"

About: Glasgow Royal Infirmary / Accident & Emergency Scottish Ambulance Service / Emergency Ambulance

(as a relative),

Father had a fall. This was the second in a few hours. He is 89 years old and his carer sent an ambulance for him as he sustained an injury to his back and could not raise from the floor.

The SAS staff were excellent with their caring and respectful approach to him.

On arrival he waited a lengthy time on a trolley in a corridor not even within the main ED but outside a triage room.

I appreciate patients should be seen in order of priority and life threatening conditions are categorised as to be seen first. However it was noted those that were in police custody or challenging were given the priority and while I realise you cannot discuss other patients conditions, it was clear that these patients were not only younger but clinically well as they were walking, talking and even went out to smoke at the hospital entrance.

There was no way that nurses could have monitored him in a corridor and prior to be taken to a cubicle for assessment was totally ignored.

The wait in the ED was just short of 8 hours before he was transferred to a bed having been there from just before 1800 hours and placed in a bed at 0200 hours.

There appeared to be no coordination of basic care with relief of pressure from his pressure areas and taking into consideration this was a real concern, food fluid or any form of nutrition was not offered and having missed his tea time care service he had to do without.

The trolley he was on was stained with blood, a red name band had said the mattress was checked in February. Is this normal policy? When highlighted about the blood stain on the trolley bed rail nothing was done.

It was disappointing to say that care was sub standard for an 89 year old man who has never been in hospital and this experience was far from positive.

I would finally add about the professionalism of the front line staff. I do not know if NHS GGC have a uniform policy but having witnessed Drs with wrist watches, Nurses with hair down their back, wearing stoned rings and earrings this did not reflect well on the ED. I'm sorry to have to bring this to your attention. Perhaps if we hadn't waited for over 8 hours we would never have noted this.

The Clinical Leaders need to be visible to see this, as it does not promote a good image of a professional team.

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Response from Martin Esposito, Clinical Effectiveness Lead, Clinical Directorate, Scottish Ambulance Service

picture of Martin Esposito

Dear Drew3

Thank you so much for sharing the story of your father’s experience. Whilst I was sorry to hear about his fall, I was glad to hear about the care he received from the ambulance staff who attended him that evening.

I am sure that the Glasgow Royal Infirmary will respond to your feedback about the care your father received when he arrived at hospital.

I do hope that he is recovering well.

Take care


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Response from Lorna Gray, Patient Experience, Public Involvement Project Manager, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

Dear Drew3,

GRI staff strive to provide a high standard of care to all patients and we are sorry to hear that your father’s experience in the Emergency Department fell short of this on this occasion. Please be assured that your comments have been shared with staff within the department.

I would be more than happy to fully investigate the circumstances surrounding your father’s admission and discuss directly with the staff involved in his care. If your father wishes to provide his details I will undertake this review and provide a detailed response. You can contact me through my colleague Lorna, on lorna.gray@ggc.scot.nhs.uk.


Russell Coulthard,

General Manager, Emergency Care & Medical Services

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