"Unwilling to help"

About: Exmouth Health Service / Emergency Department

(as the patient),

Over the space of a week I was experiencing swelling in my mouth and tongue. This was particularly distressing as it came out of nowhere and caused me to have trouble breathing on multiple occasions. Within that week I presented to the Emergency Department four times - one of those times including an admission and overnight stay due to the severity.

I had attempted to make an appointment with my GP to get a referral, however the next appointment available was not for over a week. Given the severity of my condition over the past week, that seemed too long to wait.

As such, with the most recent flare up of the condition, I returned to the ED. In the most recent visit, I presented with a large amount of discomfort and although there was not breathing issues this particular time, I was really concerned as it was not going away.

I feel that the doctor that saw me was rude and unsympathetic to my condition. I requested a referral to a specialist, as I had needed to go to the ED multiple times over the last week and wanted to get to the bottom of it as soon as possible. The doctor told me that they would not give me a referral, and that I'd be right and could wait until next week. Never before have I had such a bad experience with a doctor. The staff here are usually great, however this doctor seemed to show no concern for my condition.

I requested to see another doctor, however there were none available straight away, and as my condition was not considered life-threatening, I needed to wait for another doctor to come in.

I understand that they did not consider my condition life-threatening and that I would therefore need to wait to see the next available doctor - however I expected that the fact that I had presented to the ED with the same issue multiple times and had actually needed to be admitted one of those times due to the severity, that they would actively try to help resolve my condition.

Responses

Response from Michele Young, Coordinator Executive Services, Executive Services, WACHS - Midwest

picture of Michele Young

Hi distressing condition,

Thank you for sharing your concerns on Patient Opinion.

I’m sorry to hear that your experience of our service has left you less than satisfied. The WA Country Health Service - Midwest aims to provide accessible, safe, high-quality care for everyone. The concerns you have outlined are not reflective of our values, particularly that of compassion and the service standards that we strive for.

I have discussed your story with Tamara Sweeney the Operations Manager Gascoyne who is working with the staff at Exmouth Hospital to resolve your concerns. Good communication is a vital part of being able to provide care and we will discuss your concerns about communication with all staff to improve the experience of all health users. I have been informed that you have also contacted Exmouth Hospital directly with your feedback and contact details and as such someone will be in contact with you today to discuss your request for a specialist referral.

Please be assured that we are willing to address any concerns and provide the best possible service to all.

Thank you again for taking the time to share your feedback on Patient Opinion, feedback is important and helps us improve our services.

Kind regards

Michele

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Response from Michele Young, Coordinator Executive Services, Executive Services, WACHS - Midwest

picture of Michele Young

Dear distressing condition

Thanks again for taking the time to share your experience on Patient Opinion. I understand that Emma Howard, Clinical Nurse Manager Exmouth Hospital has been in contact and assisted you in resolving your issue. If you have any further concerns regarding your care please do not hesitate to contact Emma on 9949 3630.

I hope you are continuing to recover well.

Kind regards

Michele

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