"Sydney Eye Hospital"

About: Sydney / Sydney Eye Hospital / 1 East (Ophthalmology) Sydney / Sydney Eye Hospital / Emergency Department

(as a relative),

My spouse had a very bad eye infection and was in a lot of pain. We presented at the eye hospital on a weekend night. They had been admitted there a few years ago overnight as they needed drops hourly. The front office staff were friendly. 

This time, the triage doctor asked my spouse to hold the black plastic eye cover device across their eye. When they held it the wrong way, they laughed at my spouse. It wasn't funny. Then the triage doctor asked my spouse to turn it around and then laughed at them a second time. I politely suggested that perhaps the triage doctor might show my spouse how to hold it and to understand that they are in a lot of pain in their eyes and were feeling distressed and unwell.  

We then waited another hour and were seen by a different doctor who admonished my spouse for wearing their contact lenses too much and gave a script for drops to be applied hourly throughout the night. This doctor declined to admit my spouse because they said there weren't enough beds. 

When I asked where we could get the script filled they said they didn't know, that their pharmacy was closed and that we'd have to find a 24-hour pharmacy. When I asked if they knew where one might be, they said they didn't.  

They gave no pain medication and did not enquire about how my spouse was feeling. 

We felt very alone, very badly treated and like the staff were deigning to bother with us. I feel this was unprofessional and arrogant.

A few years ago we had an excellent experience here with professional caring staff. This time, I feel the staff were rude, then arrogant and then unhelpful.

Perhaps some lessons in common courtesy and professionalism are needed. 

I believe the arrogant staff that treated my spouse do not need to be so full of themselves.  Actually assisting doesn't cost much and after all, it is actually their job.


Response from Pauline Rumma, Director, Clinical Services, Sydney and Sydney Eye Hospital

Dear spouse of patient,

Thank you for taking the time to write about your recent care while being treated within our Emergency Department. I am sorry to hear of your negative experience and I understand this would have been distressing for you both.

I am disappointed to hear there was a lack of professionalism and courtesy by the staff. I apologise for the poor experience and have forwarded your comments to the Nurse Unit Manager of the Emergency Department to discuss with emergency staff. Your feedback is valuable and to fully understand and assist, I would like to investigate further. Please feel free to contact me through SESLHD-SSEHExecutiveServices@health.nsw.gov.au with your best contact details.

Again thank you for the feedback and I hope your partner's eye issue is resolving.

Kind regards

Dr Pauline Rumma

Director of Clinical Services

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