"Nurses in ambulatory care assisting a patient above and beyond the call of duty."

About: Prince of Wales Hospital / PB2W - Ambulatory Care & PDL

(as other),

A patient arrived in ambulatory care to have an infusion. I was having my monthly infusion and witnessed what happened. The patient had been referred for an infusion by a doctor in the hospital. The patient arrived without the necessary medication for her infusion. When asked she informed the nursing staff the doctor had not informed her that she needed to bring the medication for the infusion with her and had not given her a script to obtain the necessary medication. The patient, in my view, found it very difficult to walk and she was brought to ambulatory care by a friend, who also had difficulty walking.

The nursing staff and administrative assistant reassured the patient that they would do what they could to help her and to obtain a script for the medication and the medication for her. They nursing staff reassured the patient they would do their best so she could have the necessary infusion today.

I witnessed the nursing staff and administrative assistant call and find a doctor who could write a script for the patient's medication. They then found that they needed an authority script. I saw the nursing staff access the necessary authority script. I also heard that the doctor they contacted was a junior medical doctor who was not able to write an authority script. I saw that this doctor found an appropriate registrar medical practitioner who wrote up the necessary authority script and brought it to ambulatory care for the patient. The patient's friend was then able to take the script to the hospital pharmacy, obtain the medication, bring it back to ambulatory care and the patient then had the necessary infusion.

During this time, which took approximately 90-minutes or so, the nursing staff managed the complexities of the hospital system to obtain the right script, they communicated constantly with the patient and her friend, reassured the patient (who was distressed), brought her sandwiches and drinks, and cared for this patient.

I want to thank the following nursing staff and administrative staff for what I witnessed today. The staff work in ambulatory care at Prince of Wales Hospital, Sydney, NSW.

Anne (administrative staff)

Nursing staff: Shanta, Michelle, Maela

I want to thank the staff for their compassion and for taking responsibility for an issue that was not of their making and for doing so with all thought for the care of the patient.

Responses

Response from Barbara Daly, Acting Director of Nursing, SSEH, Sydney Hospital & Sydney Eye Hospital

Dear sunbr88,

Thank you for taking the time to share this story with us. We are grateful to receive your high level of praise for Anne, Shanta, Michelle and Maela. It is pleasing to read that your observations acknowledged the highly professional and helpful manner in which our staff were able to help and support this elderly patient to ensure that she received her treatment. We note that this lady may not have been informed of all details for ambulatory admission thank you for bringing this to our attention. This feedback will allow us to review the information provided to our patients prior to their ambulatory care admission to prevent this from occurring again.

It is rewarding for us to read your comments and we are grateful to hear that Anne, Shanta, Michelle and Maela acted with such kindness and compassion and that they went to great lengths to ensure patient centred care for this lady and her friend.

We appreciate that you took time to write to us and share this experience with us.

Barbara

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