"1 hour 20 minutes waiting for ambulance following an RTA"

About: London Ambulance Service NHS Trust Queen Elizabeth Hospital / Trauma and orthopaedics

(as a relative),

My partner was knocked off his bike around about and 999 was called. It took the ambulance nearly one hour and twenty minutes to get to him. I held his head and neck still for 40 minutes before a policemen took over, who then had hold his neck still for another 40 minutes. On calling 999 again we were told that they were short of crews and would need to wait, but would help as soon as possible.

After 30 minutes of waiting the police radioed in and we overheard that the ambulance was sent to the wrong part of London! My partner doesn't have all her vertebrae and his bike helmet was damaged to the extent that the inner shell was damaged. He was classed as a low risk case - despite being knocked off his push bike and put over the care bonnet and landing on his head, with his leg and arm taking the remaining impact.

He iwas under the team at Greenwich for his leg injuries and after, X-rays, a CT and MRI and much discussion ( 16-17 hrs in ED), his neck brace was removed.

Having worked in A&E for many years and having worked with LAS directly before, I can honestly say that I am disgusted with my partner's care and the risk he was put in by  what I think is an inadequate service and ineffective leadership. The crew that attended were very good and professional, but I believe the control room team and management team need to be held to account.

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Response from Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust

I am sorry to read your comments about your recent visit to the Emergency Department(ED). All or our staff in the ED are trained to carry out their duties with due care and professionalism. I do apologiese that this has not been your experience on this occasion.

Please be assured that all your concerns you have raised are acknowledged. I will be highlightling the points you raised to the whole team by sharing your experience with all staff so that we can learn from this with the aim of improving the future level of care we provide to our patients. If you would like your concerns investigated further and receive a formal response please contact the Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) team at Queen Elizabeth Hospital on 0208 8836 4592. Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback.

Tracey Murphy
Emergency Department Matron
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