"... where is the respect and compassion?"

About: The Townsville Hospital

(as a relative),

I phoned from across Australia to speak with relative (inpatient) and was abruptly told no-one by that name recorded. Without even a hint of effort put in to ask whether they could try to find the patient I was told to phone the other hospital on their number, (both hospitals are connected by landline). With no result, I then phoned the family for more information and rang the hospital back to receive the same angry and unhelpful response. I asked to be put through to the appropriate ward and as if by magic the patient was found and had been there for a whole week. When someone phones a hospital they are not doing so to place a bet on a horse, where is the respect and compassion? Condescending attitude not accepted.


Response from Julie Shepherd, Nurse Manager Patient Experience, Patient Services; Clinical Governance Directorate, Townsvillle Hospital and Health Services

Dear bugsette,

Thank you for taking the time to share your story on Patient Opinion and giving us your valuable feedback. I am really sorry to hear of your comments about the angry and unhelpful response you have received via the phone recently. I apologise that you have experienced this ‘bugsette’ and please know that I will be passing your concerns to the Director of Commercial Services.

Your story highlights just how significant compassionate and respectful communication is for health care workers to provide to everyone we come into contact with, be it face to face or over the phone. We are here to help those who are ill or those who are worried about a family member and to not provide good communication is really disheartening.

Please know that our hospital takes all feedback seriously and once again, I thank you for sharing your story which will help us to improve on things that we could do better. I hope that your family member is recovering well.

With kind regards,

Julie Shepherd

  • {{helpful}} {{helpful == 1 ? "person thinks" : "people think"}} this response is helpful