"Poor patient care"

About: Geraldton Hospital / Emergency Department

(as a friend),

My friend was seen at the Emergency Department (ED), Geraldton Hospital. They had injured their hand at work and were sent for X-rays of their hand. Someone in ED/Radiology told them that the X-rays will be sent to their GP and they can go home. My friend is a teenager and does not visit the hospital often, so they did what they were told. 

Later that afternoon, my friend contacted their GP to inquire about their X-ray results. I believe the GP did not know anything about it. They called the hospital and were told they could not find them when it was their turn to be seen by the ED doctor. My friend obviously was not there because they told them that they could go home.

They did not receive a tetanus shot, the wounds on their hand were not cleaned and no support bandage was offered for their hand - it was only bruised, but very swollen. No antibiotics were prescribed for possible infection. They only got a script for pain killers.

I believe this is very poor patient care, and no duty of care was exercised in this case. I am really appalled and horrified at the lack of support they had received. I know there are patients in ED who need immediate and acute care, but I believe even minor injuries should at least be addressed and taken care of.

Responses

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

picture of Michele Young

Dear oriontp45,

Thank you for getting in touch and sharing your friend's health care experience. I was disappointed to read about the aspects of your friend's care that you described. I am very sorry that your friend experienced our service in this way as it does not meet the standards that we strive for.

So that we are able to investigate your friend's specific concerns, we would be grateful if your friend could contact us directly to discuss the issues you have raised. Due to confidentiality requirements, we would require your friend to contact us. You are very welcome to be involved as a support person if your friend would like. The contact details for Derek Fraser, Geraldton Hospital Operations Manager are 0409 045 153 or Derek.Fraser@health.wa.gov.au or alternatively you can contact me on 0457 536 620 or michele.young@health.wa.gov.au. Your friend's call would be very welcome and can still be addressed anonymously.

We will, of course, respect your friend's decision should they choose not to make contact and if this is the case we will have discussions with staff about your friend's experience and how we may improve going forward.

I want to reassure you that your feedback is valued and will be used to improve our service so that our care is safe, effective and meets our consumers’ needs.

We hope to hear from your friend very soon.

Kind regards

Michele

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