The patients don’t matter…

But then, based on my own experiences, I already knew that.

According to Pulse, today, though:-

“The BMA is launching a major investigation into the psychological effect of rising patient complaints on doctors, in order to assess the professional and personal repercussions on the profession.”

Seriously? How bloody self-obsessed is that? What about the patients, whose lives are being trashed by inept doctors?

If patients complain about doctors, they usually have a bloody good reason for doing so, as I did, yet the only result was for me to be branded a trouble-maker and saddled with a consultant who falls so far below what I consider to be acceptable standards I see no point in ever seeing him again.

So never mind the effects on doctors, BMA, what about the effects on patients, whose lives are put at risk when doctors get it wrong? Which, in my experience, they do far too often.

This is my experience (apologies to those who already know this):-

January 2011 – admitted to Arrowe Park Hospital with severe respiratory infection. Two separate doctors promise to prescribe effective analgesia – it never arrives. Nor is either decision entered in my records – I have a copy.

Another doctor tells me to discontinue using the nebuliser, as the Salbutamol is aggravating my tachycardia (175bpm at the time). This wasn’t recorded either, leaving me to argue with nursing staff three times a day that I’d been told not to use the nebuliser.

I was, while there, diagnosed with severe heart failure and – can you see a pattern here? – this wasn’t entered in my records either, the fuck-uppery resulting from which has been reported in detail here (see the Chronicles of the Heart series of posts).

Eventually I got to see a consultant cardiologist. By that time I was so ill that getting to the hospital was a major undertaking. The consultant scheduled a series of diagnostic tests. Some required me to be at the hospital either very early or very late on successive days. This was impossible (already covered in detail). Some of the tests I considered too dangerous, especially as there were safer ways of obtaining the same information, so I declined.

The consultant, at that point, even though there was much that could still have been done for me, effectively vanished, failing to answer letters justifiably asking what the hell was going on.

So I lodged an official complaint. This was prejudged, by email, before it ever got near official channels. I did eventually get a formal reply, which I didn’t even bother opening – there was no point.

I was assigned to a new consultant who prescribed a highly dangerous drug, having convinced me, against my better judgement, that it was safe. He prescribed it at double the recommended dose for heart failure, and despite my initially feeling better, it very soon wreaked havoc on my health, making me very much worse than I had been before I took it.

I am now, after long illness, taking it at a quarter of the dose he prescribed,** at which level it keeps my chronic tachycardia under control. I am still, however, profoundly ill, and it is now over two months since I’ve been able to go out.

**It’s clear, with hindsight, that he prescribed purely on the basis of my hypertension, utterly ignoring my heart failure and calcified aortic valve – a combination which is killing me.

So, BMA, never mind the doctors, who probably wouldn’t be distressed by patients’ complaints if they weren’t actually the cause of them in the first bloody place.

What about that patients?

Who speaks for us?



4 thoughts on “The patients don’t matter…

  1. Not the Dr’s we have a problem with – it’s those damned Administrators.. Far too many and they think they are more important tan any Consultants and Nurses. Get rid of 90%, bring back Matron and we are fare a hemmof lot better.
    Pat x

  2. I have yet to finish the “About me” section on my blog. It’s so hard as my health and wellbeing is fooked due to a surgeon and his failure to do anything – and also the nurses who should have known better. The result is that come January 2013 I will be having a below the knee amputation – and it’s frightening the life out of me! I have a new surgeon, but as nice and accommodating as he is, I don’t trust him – I don’t trust anyone in the Health Authority anymore. I wrote a complaint against the surgeon and the nurses and am still waiting to get a proper and full response to my complaint. The complaint went in in July – they have well passed the date that they were supposed to respond. I now have to have someone come to help me with a letter for the Ombudsman – who will then take over my complaint and also make a complaint against the Complaints team at the hospital! How fooking mad is that?!??!?
    I have held out and held out but I am going to get in touch with a solicitor who specialises in medical negligence and hope to goodness that I can get legal aid!
    I also used to work for the HA – a long time ago as a medical secretary, but I saw stuff you would never believe and such wastes of resources that I was bitterly ashamed to work for them.
    There really is no-one there to look out for the patient is there anymore?

  3. I too feel extremely let down by the HA ..I have a long term condition which requires frequent trips to hospital, well, it did..I had my last treatment for a spinal disease (just one of my problems) in August only to be told after many years with the same fantastic consultant, that i had to be discharged because the ‘trusts’ were ‘merging’ My consultant explained that he would contact my GP in due course and a review of my care plan would be discussed but i could expect to see him again somehow in another hospital within a few months….So there is hope, i questioned??? We shall see was his answer..As it has transpired.I am virtually unable to move!! I am a pretty determined and quite stubborn individual, even by my standards, i am giving in..In desperation i telephoned his secretary which has always been the way forward when needed..Her hands were tied. .I was informed i would have to see my GP again to be re-referred!! Which i promptly did..So back to the ‘choose and book system’ I was offered a private (one week wait) and an NHS (62DAY WAIT) so of course chose the fore mentioned, this morning i received a letter from BMI telling me they had cancelled my appointment with them after an assessment by ‘The team’ wtf!! So i am now virtually house bound and without any hope of treatment. Yes i have morphine for pain, etc, etc..but what about the ‘patient care’ in or out patient care or are we all supposed to become reliant on opiates and a few kind neighbours..You have to fight for everything these days.What is happening to the ‘GREAT’ in Britain…Best wishes

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