"very traumatic and unpleasant experience. No..."

About: Russells Hall Hospital

What I liked

To be honest, absolutely nothing. It was an awful experience.

What could be improved

I attended A & E in the early hours of this morning after phoning for an ambulance at 01.50am.

I was experiencing extreme abdominal pain, high temperature, nausea and diarrhoea. I had had an abdominal operation 4 weeks ago and was concerned I had picked up an infection.The ambulance crew gave me gas and air to help with the pain and wheeled me into one of the bays.

I'm not sure what time I actually arrived in A & E, because I was feeling so ill, but at 05.30 this morning I still had not been seen by a doctor.

After approx 1 hour a nurse at the hospital gave me 2 Paracetamol and then a further 2 Ibuprofen later on to help ease the pain. At no point did anyone come over to ask how I was feeling, check on my blood pressure,(which the ambulance crew had said was very low) ask if I needed help managing my diarrhoea or generally acknowledge that I was there.

However we did have some entertainment while we sat for all those hours in the bay. We were able to watch the antics of 8 nurses (male and female) who were sat around for hours at work stations in the centre of A & E, chatting and throwing paper aeroplanes at one another and by the seem of it not much else to do. Pity they couldn't have come around to check on everyone sat in the bays or just even ask if we needed anything to help make our horrendous wait more comfortable. And where were all the doctors? If anyone knows then please let me know. Eventually at 05.30am my husband and I got up and walked out in disgust. I imagine no one even noticed we had gone. Very bad experience.

Anything else?

I think I've said it all except I am still experiencing abdominal pain but I will suffer for as long as I can before I ever put myself and my husband through anything like that experience ever again.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Russells Hall Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to post your comments on your visit to our Accident and Emergency Department. 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.

We aim to offer our patients the highest standards of care and we are very sorry if we have fallen short of those standards on this occasion.

Your report of staff throwing paper airplanes during what appears to have been a typically busy day in the department is disturbing. This is not something we would expect from our dedicated A&E team and your comments have been forwarded to the matron in charge.

She would welcome the opportunity to investigate this incident further but this would mean knowing exactly what date and time of day you visited A&E to identify the staff concerned. Could you please get in touch with our Patient Advice and Liaison service (PALS) on free phone 0800 073 0510 to allow us the opportunity to look into these issues further?

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