"Without the NHS I wouldn't be here now"

About: Royal Alexandra Hospital / General Medicine Scottish Ambulance Service

(as the patient),

In October 2010 I was admitted to Royal Alexandra Hospital Paisley, Ward 24 with extreme stomach pain.

It turns out I had acute necrotising pancreatitis caused by gallstones which is very unusual as I was only 15 years old at the time. I was moved to High Dependency then onto the Intensive Care Unit as my condition worsened.

The team in ICU were fantastic and the care I received was probably the best. I was in ICU for around 2 weeks mostly sedated, I was intubated also. During my second week there my condition worsened and I had to be put to sleep and moved to the Glasgow royal infirmary's pancreatic unit for specialist care.

The only complaint I have is how this was handled, granted it would have been hard to explain to me why the rush of the emergency was happening, I heard the words trauma and emergency and thought I was going to die, only now do I realise I actually was - for a young person of 15 this was terrifying.

My care in surgical HDU at the Royal was also fantastic and after 5 weeks there I was sent back to the RAH ward 26 where I stayed for another 3 weeks. Overall on my return the care I received was fantastic.

Throughout my whole ordeal, my consultant at the RAH Anton Buter was very helpful. I am forever thankful for what he and his team have done for me, Nothing ever proved difficult for him and he would spend time talking me through everything.

After leaving hospital I was not offered counselling which was disappointing, as I was affected very badly by flash backs and not fully knowing what happened to me in ICU. However now I have finally come to terms with it and have realised how lucky I am to still be here.

A lot of people complain about the NHS, and yes at times we don't get what we want from it, however if it wasn't for the NHS I wouldn't be here today.

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Response from Paul Cannon, Head of Administration, Acute Services Division, Greater Glasgow & Clyde NHS

Thank you for taking the time and trouble to provide your very kind and thoughtful comments. Your experience must have been very distressing, especially for a 15 year old. I was sorry to read that certain aspects seemed to leave you wondering if communication could have been handled better, but I am sure that the staff were acting in your best interests. I was also very pleased to read that you have gone on to make a good recovery from what sounded like a life threatening illness.

It means a great deal to staff to read these comments, and I am very grateful that you did so.

Once again please accept my thanks for sending us these comments. Staff involved in caring for you will be delighted that you appreciated the care provided to you, and will be heartened by the support you have expressed in the services provided by the NHS.


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