"Staff were brilliant - let down that there was no aftercare"

About: Tameside General Hospital / Cardiology

(as a relative),

Dr Dimarakis was the surgeon who carried out a triple heart by pass on my Father in March 2019.

I can not praise him enough, he has been a true professional, he has been approachable and caring whilst my Dad was under his care.

Further more his secretary has been a God send, I have had to ring her on several occasions for advice (which is above and beyond her role as a secretary) Catherine has been the most professional person, she has been of great help and I'm not sure what I would have done without her. 

Following on from my Dad's hospital stay and his return home he went down hill very quickly.  Despite having contact numbers for the cardiac nurses nobody ever returned my call.  I felt like we had been left high and dry with nobody to support or advise us.  This resulted in two emergency doctors being called out and two ambulances. I believe that if we had some kind of support this would have all been unavoidable. He had to stop taking is heart medication due to low blood pressure.  Several weeks passed and we were lucky that Catherine (secretary)  managed to bring his review appointment forward.  He was seen at  Tameside Hospital  and was admitted the very same day by Dr Dimarakis.  Various tests were carried out and he was sent home. 

It has taken over 10 weeks to see a slight improvement in my Dad's overall health.  It has been a very long and scary process. My point is this:- The surgeon, his secretary and hospital staff were brilliant.  However once discharged from the hospital there was nothing or nobody to contact with concerns and his health declining.  I have no idea what someone who lived on their own would do! Probably die! There needs to be some form of after care a district nurse or a G.P. visit or a cardiac nurse,  There was absolutely nothing at all.  I feel very let down in the fact there was no aftercare.  The cardiac nurses who are supposed to be there to help have failed entirely.  Please look at your aftercare for cardiac patients, it really does need to be addressed.  I hope the next person who needs help will get it, currently there seems to be none whatsoever.

Again a huge thank you to the surgeon, he secretary and hospital staff, 

Responses

Response from Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust

Good morning,

Thank you for taking the time to post these comments about the recent experience that you and your father have shared, following his Cardiac Surgery. It is really pleasing to hear of your positive experience of care and that this was successful. I understand that your father's surgery is likely to have been performed at Wythenshawe Hospital. This is where Dr Dimarakis and his secretary are based and this type of procedure is not undertaken at Tameside Hospital. Dr Dimarakis is a visitor to Tameside Hospital and I was pleased to note that your father's admission to Tameside Hospital under his care for tests was also positive.

With regard to your comments about after care and ongoing support from Cardiology Specialist Nurses, I am keen to understand these issues in more detail and it would be really appreciated if you could contact me or a member of the PALS and Complaints Team at the Trust to discuss this further. Hopefully we will be able to ascertain what services should have been involved in your father's care and any reasons why this did not happen as it should have. Our contact telephone number is 0161 922 4466 or you can email palsandcomplaints@tgh.nhs.uk.

I have shared this with our Cardiology Team here for information, but hope that the Team at Wythenshawe Hospital will be able to share your comments with Dr Dimarakis and Catherine directly.

kind regards, Alexia

Alexia Charnley

Head of PALS, Complaints and Candour

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