"Poor communication at Great Western A&E"

About: The Great Western Hospital / Trauma and orthopaedics

(as the patient),

I recently had to go to A&E at Great Western Hospital because of bleeding after foot surgery. The wait was long, as was expected over the holidays, but what bothered me the most was an apparent lack of care and concern from one doctor.

She was happy to send me off for an x-ray that I felt wasn't needed but then wanted to leave me to wait, with a wound that was still bleeding four days after the initial surgery, for another three days to attend an orthopaedic appointment. At that point I'd already had the dressing changed once since the surgery and the second dressing was completely, and very noticeably, saturated with blood over an area of some four by six inches through several layers of wrapping including extra layers that I'd added at the advice of my GP before I came to A&E.

When I asked if anything was going to be done about the bleeding I was taken off to another room and told, in no uncertain terms, to wait for the orthopaedic appointment. Rather than argue the point I told this doctor that I didn't appreciate her attitude, didn't think it was a good idea to leave this, against the advice of another doctor, and asked to see someone else.

The second doctor was concerned about the bleeding, did look at the wound, and had the nurse apply some Steri-Strips to try to close the parts that were open and still bleeding. Even after that, when I attended the orthopaedic clinic they were surprised that so little was done and had to add more Steri-Strips and redress the wound again themselves.

I find the service supplied by the NHS to be satisfactory for the most part, it's only a few individuals, in my opinion, that cause problems. The doctor that wanted to leave me with a bleeding wound and a dressing soaked in blood also had problems communicating and from my experience a generally poor attitude toward patients.

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