"Poor care and communication from Corbett and Russells Hall Hospitals "

About: Corbett Hospital / Trauma and orthopaedics Russells Hall Hospital

(as a relative),

What was supposed to be a day case procedure has now turned into a 4 week epic. My partner walked into Corbett's to have a caudal epidural- an injection to ease back pain and was told he'd be back at home for his lunch. He felt the needle go in and was in severe pain. I was phoned to say he had been 'dead-legged' and I shouldn't worry, he'd be back to normal within 24 hrs, but failed to tell me that everyone else had got up and gone home. It took them 5 hours to transfer him to Russell's Hall. He had no feeling in both legs for 3 days, then got movement back in his one leg. He is now reliant on 2 crutches and a wheelchair to get about.

I've had no explanation of what's wrong with him and his expected recovery time. The consultant did speak to him, but my other half was so spaced out on morphine and painkillers, he can't remember what was said to him. I've never even spoken to a consultant/ doctor and I'm down as his next of kin. He's been rushed back in through a referral from a physio, still no doctor nor consultant. No explanation of whats wrong and if/when he'll recover. We're absolutely furious and anxious as this affects not just the patient but all our family. I feel this was all absolutely atrocious.

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Response from The Dudley Group of Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for posting your feedback about your partner’s visit to day case at Corbett Hospital. We are very sorry to hear about the difficulties he faced following his injection to ease back pain. We do perform approximately 1000 similar back operations a year and the majority of patients are satisfied with a good outcome.

We do not feel it is appropriate to go into too much detail in this forum: we believe our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) is aware of your partner’s experience and is working with you address your concerns. If this is not the case, please get in touch with PALS on free phone (0800) 073 0510.

We welcome all feedback and would like to assure you that all comments are taken seriously and acted upon as part of our ongoing commitment to improving patient experience.

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Update posted by 820980 (a relative)

Its has taken 2 weeks for that pitiful reply.

After a 2 week stay, my partner was discharged. He was turfed out of his bed and whilst he was wheeled to the bathroom, your staff came in stripped his bed and ordered not to remake it. The auxilliary nurse was apologetic as she explained she was told not to remake the bed.

So my partner had to sit in a wheelchair (our own - not enough available in the hospital) to wait to be signed off, drugs and also for Ambuline to come and check whether they could get him home. He was promised to be spoken to by the OT and other senior staff to be reassured what his aftercare plan was. OT never came.

We've asked for a second opinion - nothing has come from it. The OT dept came out the day before planned discharge to check the house. They said he was coming out hopefully on Friday. I said I needed more time because of work, family commitments and visiting my partner in the ward. I was told to miss visiting and phone him instead so I could implement her instructions.

He was discharged within the 24hrs period of notifying relatives/carers of impending discharge, we've been given no emergency numbers, no support after discharge and still don't know what's wrong. No physio for over a month after discharge, yet was given physio daily in the ward.

Basically, my partner is a prisoner in our bedroom. Yes, he can wheel himself 6 feet to the bathroom. He got stuck on the landing for 2 hours the other day when he waved the children off to school because the wheelchair is too bulky to turn into the bedroom from the landing. Great assessment from the OTs.

I cannot express how devastated we feel at our treatment received by B2 Ward at Russell's Hall Hospital. We also had other problems and difficulties encountered during this last stay in hospital.

As for PALS, I haven't seen or heard from PALS for over a fortnight.

You say you feel it is inappropriate to go into too much detail on this website. But what I find inappropriate is the hospital's attitude to what is a very distressing situation for a man and his family. You know who we are and if you want to respond to us personally, feel free. We don't like airing our problems in public, but you have left us without option.

Response from The Dudley Group of Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for posting your feedback. We are sincerely sorry that you still have concerns about the care your partner received at our hospitals. We have spoken to our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) team who thought they had resolved the queries he raised with the consultant. However, we are more than happy to assist your partner with any outstanding issues and PALS will be sending further guidance and information to him in the post.

We take patient confidentiality very seriously at The Dudley Group and will not enter into any further correspondence via this website. I hope you agree that personal contact with your partner will be more helpful to all parties concerned.

If in the meantime you would like to contact PALS, they are available on free phone (0800) 073 0510.

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