"Hospital let down by admin/reception staff"

About: Royal United Hospital / Accident and emergency

It has been a little while since I had to take my Mother to the AandE department of the RUH but my anger has been simmering all this time and I now feel I must make a poor review of how she was treated, even though my Mother has asked that I do not. I must also say that my sister made an instant online complaint at the time via her mobile phone. My Mother visited her GP who told her that she must go immediately to A and E as she may have suffered a stroke, she was taken to A and E straight away where the receptionist completely ignored her for a long time, preferring instead to concentrate upon their paperwork, even though my Mother was sitting there right in front of them. This is when my sister made her online complaint - which resulted in no action at all. My Mother was eventually taken to the next stage of A and E where she sat for four hours waiting for a doctor to see her, surely it is recognised that there is a "golden hour" when stroke victims are most likely to recover if they are treated quickly? My Mother was certainly not given this "golden hour" opportunity and it was fortunate for her that she had not suffered a stroke - but she could have! I also have to tell you about a very old lady who was waiting in the A and E department for collection, she was very cold and was shivering and moaning, I requested a blanket for her at reception (the same ignorant receptionist who had ignored my own Mother) and was told that she was fine, she really was not fine, she was cold and distressed but this receptionist did not care at all and seemed annoyed that I had bothered them. Our visit to A and E was not a good one, the reception and admin staff had a could not care attitude and the doctors all seemed to be taking their break or drinking coffee, no wonder the waiting times are so long. Seriously I have yet to visit an A and E dept to see a doctor without a coffee cup in their hand! What is going on, is there no effective management at all?

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Response from Royal United Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to provide our service with feedback.

I do hope your mother is recovering well.

I am very sorry to read that you and your sister were unhappy with the attitude and behaviour of the reception and administration staff in the Emergency Department.

It is difficult for me to respond to this incident without some further information from you but we would be happy to look into this.

If you would like us to do so, can I ask you to please contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service on 01225 825656 or via email at ruh-tr.PatientAdviceandLiaisonService@nhs.net and a member of the team will take you through the next steps of the process.

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