"Waited in A&E for 4 1/2 hours with a 10 day old..."

About: North Tyneside General Hospital

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We waited for four and half hours in A&E with my 10 day old baby, I'd had a c-section and we were concerned about my baby's breathing rate . We were told by the doctor 'I think he is fine'. We were offered another 4 hour wait to see.a specialist, it was 1am! We returned the next day and demanded immediate attention (we were besides ourselves with worry). Admitted to children's ward at 9am, several doctors amd nurses were not listening to us, we told them our baby had a breathing rep rate if 120 per minute, you could tell they thought we were mad! Eventually, after carrying him to x-ray and holding him down screaming, having an ECG and the ink not working and constantly asking for the results and nurses mot being able to.take his blood pressure, a nurse happened to see his breathing rate. Finally a doctor listened to his pulse and announced he heard a murmur! It was now about 5pm. We travelled to the Freeman, where indeed they confirmed his breathing rate was 120 per minute and he had a large VSD and underwent a 7 hour open heart operation at 10 days old! This is a very brief account of my experience.

I can not bear to think about what would have happened if we had listened to the nurse and doctor in A&E or not been as assertive when we returned the next day. After learning more about a VSD my baby was presenting classic signs of heart failure. I would not have any confidence in returning to this hospital for care.

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Response from North Tyneside General Hospital

We are truly sorry about the experience you had with your baby and very concerned that you didn’t feel listened to and the distress this caused. We have looked into your case and while we feel the care offered was appropriate, you clearly feel that you should have had a better experience and we would like to discuss this further with you. We feel it would be very beneficial for you to come and talk to us as it would enable you to tell us in more detail about your experience and we could explain some of the clinical decision making that took place. Please get in touch with our Deputy Director of Nursing, Debbie Reape, who also has responsibility for paediatrics, so we can arrange a meeting at a time convenient for you. She can be contacted on 0191 293 2772.

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