NHS 111 – killing people?

People are getting a tad wound up about the increasingly dangerous NHS 111 shambles, and rightly so. However, it’s worth pointing out that, on March 15 I waited over an hour for an “emergency” ambulance to take me to Arrowe Park Hospital, Wirral. The question of how life-threatening a situation was, was apparently decided by a coin toss. Certainly, no medical judgement was employed at any point because it was clear I was talking to a complete ignoramus.

On arrival at the hospital, I found that my hour wait was all too common, with enraged people berating ambulance staff over it. One explanation, from an ambulance crew, that I overheard, was that the fleet of ambulances that used to be deployed at APH was now scattered around the Wirral (when it hadn’t simply been disposed of), and that APH’s allocation of meat wagons was – and if true this is fucking criminal – a mere two vehicles.

Frankly, I see no reason to disbelieve the explanation, as I was stuck in admitting for hours, and kept seeing the same crews over and over again, which does rather lend credence to the two vehicle story. Also, six weeks later when I was sent home, what used to be the ambulance bay was crammed – with minibuses and taxis, with not an ambulance to be seen.



3 thoughts on “NHS 111 – killing people?

  1. this is not a new thing though. over 5 years ago when taken as an emergency to Dewsbury Hospital it didn’t take the ambulance long to get to the docs where i had had some sort of attack at about 3.15pm. after being examined first by one of my GP’s who wasn’t sure if i had had a heart attack or not,he had rung for the ambulance and the hospital to expect me. i arrived about 4pm. 3 hours later i am still stuck in the recess where no one could see me and i couldn’t see them and i was on my own. till i managed to shout a passing nurse who got me a sandwich/ half way through eating that she came back to take me to xray. was 8pm when they admitted me. so 9pm before my daughter could get to me with what i needed. she hadn’t come with me but waited to hear if they were keeping me in or not.and meanwhile did other things that needed to be done bavk here like taking in a delayed Tesco order that should arrived that morning. 6 days later i was discharged from there at 9am by my specialist. i sat waiting for my new meds to arrive till they took me to the departure lounge (that’s a laugh. wasn’t going on holiday. just going home) just before dinners were going to be served. i got none. 2 hours or more later i am still waiting for my meds to take home with me.and was getting increasingly hungry. i asked if i could have something to eat. was brought a kids type lunch box. 2 slices bread with ham in it. 1 apple…(cant eat apples) and a fruit juice drink(cant drink fruit juice) felt like telling her i wasn’t a child and chucking the thing back at her.but at least i could eat the ham sandwich. asked for water to swill it down/ no water available or rather no cups and no DRINKING water in there.at 4pm ambulance came for me…but still no meds. they arrived 30 mins later. ambulance came at 5pm but had several people to drop off and guess what? i was last. was after 6pm before i got home and had had only 2 drinks of tea all day(one with breakfast at 8am the other mid morning.) disgusting carry on.if i had had my head screwed on with no brain fog i would have complained. but couldn’t get my head around what to eat without trying to formulate a complaint at that time. by time the fog lifted it was 18 months later.and too late, so hospital transport at that time wasnt bad/. but the rest of it was.

    • You’d be right at home at APH A&E!

      They were taking me down to departure too as lunch was being dished up – I just waved and got mine! It was ordered, though, which made a difference.

      And last time I was admitted, in 2011, the Infection Control trolls had banned the bedside jugs of water, so patients had to shuffle to the tap at the end of the bay every time they wanted a drink – and those that could kept those that couldn’t hydrated.

      This time, water was back!

      And that’s exactly why I don’t use the transport service for OPD appointments – you can be on the buggerdly thing for hours, especially coming home.

      And one thing I learned this time round – those who make the most fuss get the best service – whether they actually need it or not!

      • my dinner had been ordered too for that day. the day before. as no one knew i was being discharged the next day. i was supposed to be having a heart scan done while i was in the ward sometime that week (as were others) we were all sent home and had to go back later ~(6 weeks in my case) for it (and it was clear too but they still insisted i continue to take the meds they had prescribed.soon put them to one side.). when i said the meal had been ordered i was told i couldn’t stay in the ward as the bed was needed for a new patient.when asked if i couldn’t take it with me.i got no. so it will be wasted then? no the new patient will get it. whatever i said they had an answer for it.in other words. no our jobs done your not our responsibility on this ward now.. we did get water on the ward but i refuse to drink tap water with all its additives. (actually its more to do with muck that’s in it that i found after leaving some in a bottle at side of my bed at home one night. their water came from same source. )i drink sparkling spring water usually but what i had left was packed up in my holdall come to think of it. i admit i never gave it a thought.,that’s me though. once a Jobs done its done,i dont go undoing it later on. i put it out of my mind and get on with the next job.
        as for the transport service, i had no option. i had no one to fetch me that day. my nephew would have done but he was dialysing. my own kids have no transport of their own and i didnt have enough money to get a taxi (cant remember if there was a rule against going home on your own or not. some places do some dont,)no one else i knew here that had cars.yet another time i wished i had taken my test. though dont know if i would have landed up at home in one piece or not. mind being so befogged as it was. they wouldn’t even let me walk to the ambulance. yet i had been wandering the corridors for the past 3 days at least on my own. its all wrong.

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