"The deceiving look of A & E, behind closed doors."

About: Crosshouse Hospital / Accident & Emergency

(as a service user),

Took my son to accident and emergency after he hurt his finger. We were triaged quickly and then sat in accident and emergency waiting area thinking how quiet it was and that we would get seen really quickly.

There were only a few others in the waiting area. As time passed more and more people came into the department and I admit I started to get a bit annoyed because nothing was happening, well so I thought but I was so wrong!

After what seemed like a long time we were taken to a room to be seen by a Doctor. This is when I regretted even thinking how long we had sat because the minute we came out the waiting area and into the department is when it all changed my view.....

I take my hat off to each and every staff member in this department, as we sat waiting for my son to get his xray we witnessed two obviously intoxicated individuals verbally abusing each other and also abusing staff but the staff were excellent in managing to calm the situation with them.

We witnessed a confused elderly patient disorientated needing reassurance and shown back to room to be seen by a doctor.

We witnessed unhappy relatives of other patients complaining to staff who were busy but still took the time to speak to them.

My list of what we witnessed could go on but I just want to express my thanks for tending to my son on an extremely busy night which im now assuming could be the same for every night.

We also witnessed staff who did not stop and were clearly working hard under a lot of pressure.

These staff have a very difficult job to do and it is important they do not make mistakes but when you see individuals screaming at them and kicking off it makes you appreciate the care you receive for your family no matter how long it takes.

I would like to thank every member of staff for ensuring my son was taken care of and treated in the midst of what I can only describe as a very stressful looking area to work in.

Thank you to you all.

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Responses

Response from Claire Gilroy, Specialty Doctor, Emergency Department, University Hospital Crosshouse, NHS Ayrshire and Arran We are preparing to make a change

Dear Carteruk1,

Thank you so much for taking the time to give us your feedback. I hope your son's finger is on the mend.

I was pleased to read that you were triaged quickly.I am sorry that you had to wait longer than you expected. Unfortunately, as you pointed out, the waiting room is often deceptive and an apparently quiet night in the waiting room can turn out to be quite the opposite in the main department!

Communicating waiting times to service users in our department is an issue that we are currently working on trying to improve. A colleague is developing a communication board which will provide live updates to the waiting room to help tackle this problem. I would be really interested in hearing your views on what information you and your son would have found helpful whilst you were waiting to be seen. If you would like to provide more feedback please email me at Claire.gilroy@nhs.net.

You have managed to capture a typical busy evening shift within our department. I was delighted to read that you witnessed staff working hard to reassure patients and their relatives despite stressful circumstances. I will be sharing your feedback with all of the Emergency Department Team at tonight's evening handover. I am sure your positive comments will be gratefully received.

If you would like me to pass on your comments directly to the team members who looked after your son then please contact me via email Claire.Gilroy@nhs.net with his date of attendance and date of birth.

I wish your son a speedy recovery.

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