"My emergency transfer from one hospital to another"

About: Fiona Stanley Hospital Fremantle Hospital and Health Service

(as the patient),

After having a major operation of my left knee, I was transferred via ambulance with a doctor as I was post-op and still under effects of the anaesthetics. I was transferred because of breathing problems. I was on very strong pain killers through a PCA (Patient Controlled Analgesia) and a Ketamine infusion and was not in any position to make any choices for my treatment. After the handover from Fremantle to Fiona Stanley ED, all my pain medication was stopped, leaving me screaming in pain for sometime before I was treated properly.

How do I feel after this treatment at the hands of Fiona Stanley Hospital Emergency Department? I feel traumatised by the event.

Responses

Response from Janet Zagari, Executive Director Transformation, South Metropolitan Health Service, South Metropolitan Health Service

picture of Janet Zagari

Dear Quackduck63,

Thank you for sharing your story on Patient Opinion. I was very concerned to read your story and I am very sorry that your experience with our health service was such a distressing one for you.

We are currently conducting an investigation into what you have told us and I will get back to you to let you know what we have learnt and the improvement we will make as a result of your experience.

If you would like to contact me to discuss your story, please contact me on 6152 3121 or email janet.zagari@health.wa.gov.au

Once again I am very sorry for your experience with us.

Kind regards

Janet Zagari

A/Executive Director

Fiona Stanley Fremantle Hospitals Group

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Response from Janet Zagari, Executive Director Transformation, South Metropolitan Health Service, South Metropolitan Health Service

picture of Janet Zagari

Dear Quackduck63,

Thanks again for taking the time to share your experience. I wanted to provide you with an update now I have had an opportunity to investigate the issues raised in your story.

On occasions, a patient has to be transferred from Fremantle Hospital to Fiona Stanley Hospital. As much as possible, we try to make sure the patient goes straight to the appropriate ward and not through the Emergency Department so that the patient is in the area best suited to care for them and their needs, such as providing specialist post-operative care. Sometimes this isn't possible because the patient needs additional assessment before deciding which ward they should go to, or requires immediate care to stabilise their condition.

Staff in the Emergency Department are highly skilled in rapid assessment and management of acutely unwell patients. They are not as specialised in caring for post-operative pain issues which are better managed by the surgical team and on the surgical ward. As a result of your sharing your story, we will review the protocol for patient transfers from Fremantle to Fiona Stanley to make sure that there is an emphasis on getting the patient to the right ward as quickly as possible, and only going to the Emergency Department if clinically necessary. In addition, we will share your post with the Emergency Department staff in a learning environment as a reminder to consider post-operative pain relief for those patients that still need to come to the Emergency Department before going to the ward.

I hope that you have now fully recovered from your surgery and wish you all the best.

Kind regards

Janet Zagari

A/Executive Director

Fiona Stanley Fremantle Hospitals Group

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