"Made us feel like we were being pushed out."

About: Fitzroy Crossing Hospital

(as a relative),

I was in hospital with my grandmother. She was a palliative care patient. She didn't have long to go, when the doctor told me they wanted to move my grandmother to an aged care home or Derby Hospital because the hospital might be full. The doctor also said, it might be getting too much for the nurses.

My grandmother was in a palliative room where people pass, so she was in the right place. When the doctor said this, it made me feel like we were being pushed out. We did all the work for my grandmother. All the nurses had to do was give her medication and let her sleep. We showered her, took her to the toilet, changed her sheets, did everything for her care.

Me and my family were all very upset by the way the doctor made us feel.

Responses

Response from Rachele Ferrari, Operations Manager, Broome Hospital, WACHS Kimberley

picture of Rachele Ferrari

Dear Pushed out,

Thank you for taking the time to comment on Patient Opinion about how we communicated with you and your loved ones, we always value feedback and the opportunity to improve.

The Senior Medical Officer for the West Kimberley was in Fitzroy Crossing this week, and I understand visited your Grandmother on Wednesday at hospital, spending time with her. She’s obviously a very brave person and is fighting the cancer. There was some miscommunication regarding where your Grandmother should be cared for while she battles this cancer.

We are always mindful of the patients’ needs which may require them being in hospital because of their level of care or to be the best place to access end-of-life care. On the other hand, we are aware that recovery is enhanced when people are at home. As Fitzroy Crossing Hospital only has a small number of acute beds, in some cases we need to transfer patients to Derby or even to Broome to allow for acutely sick patients to be admitted to the Fitzroy Crossing Hospital. We are very aware that all hospitals have various germs in the air from other sick patients and a prolonged hospital stay can actually lead to serious infections such as pneumonia in patients whose immune systems are already compromised from their cancer.

In all cases where a loved one has a serious cancer, there are identifiable stages of grief which include denial, bargaining and anger amongst many other emotions. In talking with the doctors who have cared for your grandmother it appears that they have tried to convey the various priorities but unfortunately it has come across as wanting to push her out – that is certainly not the case. We definitely want what is in your Grandmother’s best interests.

If you would like to contact the Senior Medical Officer, Dr Bruce Dixon he would be happy to meet with your family again – you can call him directly on 0477 379 952 or email wk.smo@health.wa.gov.au

Thank you again for telling us your story, particularly at this difficult time for you and your family.

Rachele Humbert

Operations Manager

Dr. Bruce Dixon

Senior Medical Officer

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

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