"Having a stroke on a a Friday afternoon in January 2012."

About: Barnsley Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as the patient),

Had a stroke at 4: 45pm ish on a Friday afternoon which affected left side. Unable to stand initially but recovered in about 20mins. Admitted to A&E at about 5: 30pm and able to walk in unaided. Seen promptly and had an ECG. The Doctor tried to get me a brain scan but was unable to. After maybe 2 hrs in A&E I had a further stroke which left my left leg very weak. I was discharged onto the Stroke Ward at about 8: 30pm and was unable to walk. The Nurse checked me in and noted nil by mouth. I saw a general doctor at about 2am when I was allowed to eat/drink and prescribed an aspirin. Over the weekend my aspirin was stopped by one doctor and started by another (after pressure from stroke nurse). Presumably because they did not know what type of stroke I had had! I recovered mobility substantially over the weekend. I didn't see a stroke doctor until Monday and did not get my scan until Tuesday

I have no complaints about the people who treated/looked after me - all very good. But the system was poor! If a scan had been available while in A&E I may have been able to be treated to prevent the second stroke and proper medication could have been started straight away.

In addition I was discharged very rapidly on Tuesday at 6pm without a proper discussion with a stroke doctor. (I assume to free up a bed). Other tests had to be done as an outpatient.

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Response from Stroke Association, Stroke Association

I was sorry to hear of your stroke and your experience at Barnsley General Hospital. Experiencing a stroke can be a frightening event, so an expectation to be seen quickly by medical staff is understandable. I am sorry you felt the procedure for stroke care at the hospital was poor and that your second stroke could have been avoided, if your symptoms had been investigated sooner.

Unfortunately, we are not medically trained at the Stroke Association, so we would be unable to give advice about your individual case; however we can advise offer advice about stroke care in the UK and direct you to further information which may help.

Stroke care in the UK is guided by the National Clinical Guideline for Stroke, following recommendations from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. Although not ‘set in stone’, these guidelines are the standard for stroke care that all primary care trusts aim to achieve.

If you’d like to view the full document, it is available at the following link:

RCP National Clinical Guidelines for Stroke


However, a more user-friendly version is the NICE Clinical Guideline:

NICE Clinical Guideline 68 – Diagnosis and Initial Management of Acute Stroke and Transient Ischaemic Attack (TIA)


As the guidelines indicate, there are a number of processes that determine what treatment each patient receives, and as we’re not medically trained and we’re unsure of Barnsley General’s individual procedures, it would be difficult for me to suggest why an appropriate scan was not made available to you. However, this issue is something you may wish to discuss with the Patient Advice and Liaison Service. They can help support you, should you wish to leave feedback about your experience or make a more formal complaint. Their details are:

Barnsley Hospital Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

Telephone: 01226 432430

You can find details about making a formal complaint at

Barnsley District General Hospital – How to make a complaint


I was pleased to hear you had regained much of your mobility following this experience and I hope you have received the appropriate care and are recovering well. If there is any further information about stroke you would like, you can download our full range of leaflets and factsheets free of charge from our website http://www.stroke.org.uk. You can also contact us on the Stroke Helpline, which is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm on 0303 30 33 100.

I hope this is helpful and I wish you all the best for the future.

Yours sincerely

Tamara Eaton

Stroke Information Service


This month we are asking everyone who contacts the Stroke Information Service for some feedback about the service we have provided. We would really appreciate it if you would please take a few minutes to click on the link below and answer a short survey giving us your honest impression of our service. Any feedback you give will help us to ensure that we are responding to the needs of people affected by stroke and identify ways to improve our service. Many thanks for your help.


Stroke Association staff are not medically trained and the information provided does not replace information given to you by your own healthcare provider.

We would like to hold your details so that we can send you information about the work of Stroke Association. If you would like us to keep in touch please email subscribe@stroke.org.uk with your contact details.

If you would like to make a donation to Stroke Association, you can do so on our website at http://www.stroke.org.uk/donate/make_a_donation.html

All donations are gratefully received. Please do not forget to "Gift Aid" your donation if you are a UK tax payer.

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Response from Head of Patient Experience, Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for providing this valuable feedback on your experience of using our services following your recent admission to hospital. Your comments and concerns will be shared with the staff teams involved in your care and it would be really helpful if you could contact our Patient Advice & Liaison Service on 01226 432430 or email barnsleypals@nhs.net to provide your name and contact details so that we can respond to your comments.