AIBU to be cross with hospitals treatment of my DM today

(29 Posts)
Ceasre Tue 24-Jun-14 00:26:23

My DM had to have a heart scan and ecg today. She is not very mobile, walks with a stick and takes a while to get dressed and undressed.

We were seen promptly, taken into the room and a female member of staff had to be told to address my DM and not me. I know that is something that really annoys my DM, but I let it go. DM was asked to undress, top half only and lie on bed. She was not offered a blanket, gown or anything to cover herself which I found really odd, but again I let it go.

A male member of staff then came in to do the ecg, again fine, no problems. While he was still performing the procedure another male just walked into the room, did not even knock asking how long we would be. I was getting pretty iriate at this point, but my DM doesn't like me to complain so kept my mouth shut.

When we were finished the guy doing the ecg did not tell her she could get dressed, or help her down from the bed. I put her vest on and then asked for help to lower the bed. The guy who wanted to know how long we were going to be lowered the bed, then stayed in the room messing with the equipment while I helped my mum to continue getting dressed. He was getting quite antsy as we were not moving fast enough because he said he needed to get a bed in there. I wanted to tell him to fuck off, but kept my temper.

I really do feel my DM was treated like that because she is elderly, I am sure I would not have been treated in such a way, but the again I would have been quicker.

BlackeyedSusan Tue 24-Jun-14 01:11:56

yes complain.

BrianTheMole Tue 24-Jun-14 01:14:30

Yes that is absolutely not on. Very disrespectful. I would make a complaint. I would be very very cross if that was my mum.

Writerwannabe83 Tue 24-Jun-14 05:21:30

I had a heart scan and ECG done a year or so ago and it was done by a male and I didn't have anything to over myself up with either. As he was doing the USS it did feel weird having his arms and hands across my chest but I could tell he was absorbed in his monitor that to him it was just another procedure and I was just the latest patient. After my scan he told me he was done and then stayed in the room with me whilst I got dressed again.

I was 28 so definitely not elderly grin

It didn't bother me though - to people who do these procedures day in, day out, it just becomes very routine to them and so they probably don't think about how uncomfortable it may be for the topless woman.

londonrach Tue 24-Jun-14 05:44:07

Op he wouldn't have been messing with the machine he was sorting it out either for next or sending your dm scans on. I think it takes time to sort these machines out. You could have asked for a blanket but depending on scan would have to have it removed whilst it was going on. Guy should have knocked but he might have been concerned about another patient and might not have seen your dm as was intent on what he was doing. Tbh I suspect your mum was treated as anyone needed that equipment, nothing to do with age. Whether that was right or wrong that s up to you and your mum. Hope your mums scans are ok x

Mouldypineapple Tue 24-Jun-14 05:54:56

It sounds quite disrespectful. I would have thought a gown could have been provided and just lowered as required. Also the other man coming in is quite rude. H should have apologised to you and your Mum at least. You could ring the PALS department at the hospital and have a chat with them. If people don't complain then nothing changes. Good luck.

FabULouse Tue 24-Jun-14 06:22:14

There are a few things there that should be done a little differently for sure. However it is worth bearing in mind that the cardiac physiologists do not get the 'customer service' training that nurses get and are pretty much solely focused on the heart rather than a holistic view of the patient. They need to refresh communication skills and patient dignity issues though definitely.

Brabra Tue 24-Jun-14 06:36:38

You can't do an ECG through a blanket/gown. He should have addressed the patient directly, but I don't think the rest sounds too bad TBH.

Contact PALS at the hospital.

Rozbos Tue 24-Jun-14 06:54:34

It's impossible to do an ECG with a gown or blanket preserving a patients dignity, the electrodes need to be placed over and around the heart and unfortunately that does mean the patient needs to be topless. Also agree with londonrach, he wouldn't have been 'messing with the machine' he would have been sending on and saving your mothers data then deleting it and setting up for the next patient. I do agree that they should have been addressing your dm directly and that the other member of staff should have knocked and waited. I would dislike having someone wander in when having an ECG done. You could always feed back to pals and suggest providing a blanket or gown but these would have to be removed pre procedure so whether it would make a difference to patient comfort I don't know.

FamiliesShareGerms Tue 24-Jun-14 07:27:54

Complain - there are so many points of detail in your OP that are easily addressed (eg knocking before entering) but unless someone points them out they won't be.

diddl Tue 24-Jun-14 07:36:41

The procedures can be done through a gown/blanket, but I don't think that's what the OP means is it?

It's the laying there exposed whilst waiting.

Also, if the chap who helped with the bed had to be in the room, of course he shouldn't have been allowing annoyance to show.

diddl Tue 24-Jun-14 07:40:16

Sorry, that should of course be can't be done...

Toothytwo Tue 24-Jun-14 07:40:45

It's irrelevant that the blanket would have needed to have been moved for the procedure. It's just polite to allow her to be covered while she waits for the procedure to start and at the end. Nobody should have walked in without knocking and they should have left to allow her to dress.

Anything else is just excuses for being too lazy to allow basic dignity for a patient. The fact that somebody would need training for this suggests they're in the wrong job.

Ceasre Tue 24-Jun-14 07:46:03

Thanks for your responses. Just to be clear I understand that a blanket or gown cannot be worn during the procedures I was more thinking beforehand while waiting and after. I have had an ecg and seem to remember that when all the electrodes had been placed I was covered with a blanket although it was a while ago.

It was a different person completely who was setting up machine and was eager to get rid of us. Our chap had already done what he needed to do.

I just feel we should have been left alone for DM to get dressed and not rushed. It was quite uncomfortable for my poor DM. Result is a leaky valve :-( but thankfully consultant was lovely and allowed plenty of time for questions

CaptainTripps Tue 24-Jun-14 12:05:29

I understand your post. Some posters have been focusing wrongly / misunderstanding the whole being covered up during the procedure itself. I thought your post was pretty clear.

There should have been a towel or light blanket for cover up before and just after as the patient was getting down. That's just basic.

You absolutely should complain to PALS about the covering up issue and the interruption by random other.

But I have to say it sounds like you have a fiery temper which you seem to realise. There are ways of showing displeasure whilst remaining polite. I would have said something politely and directly during the interruption. That interruption shows such a lack of respect for the patient. But you don't have to start swearing. Similarly, if the man was getting antsy because of your slowness at the end - well that's his lookout. Ignore and do what you need to do at your own pace.

HappienessIsEggshaped Tue 24-Jun-14 12:10:38

I also agree a blanket should have been offered. It's like going for a smear, a smear can't be performed through a blanket but I've always been offered one to save me the embarrassment of lying there naked from the waist down. These little things help to make these procedures more comfortable for patients all round.

PicandMinx Tue 24-Jun-14 13:06:29

Shocking care OP. There is no excuse for this behaviour.

Was your DM offered a choice between a female or a male technician?

I am not surprised you are angry. Where was the respect for your DM?
Some HCPs don't care about a patient and their dignity. You are just the "10:15 in Room 29".

ShanghaiDiva Tue 24-Jun-14 13:14:10

Captain - the op didn't swear at anyone and kept her temper throughout.

Jux Tue 24-Jun-14 14:06:27

The last time I had an ecg (last year) they put on the trodes and then covered me with a large sheet of that paper they cover the beds with. That's all I needed, and I would have felt OK about people walking in because I was covered.

I think your mum was treated appallingly. Utterly insensitive and disrespectful. Luckily, there are still people working in the NHS who are able to treat patients like they are humans. It's so bad when you get one who doesn't.

Lauren83 Tue 24-Jun-14 14:11:52

Similar experience to mine, I had an ECG (at 29) by a male, no modesty blanket, stayed in the room whilst I dressed and undressed and was a bit of a production line, I didn't mind though myself at all, I'm sorry it was a stressful experience for you both, I imagine he didn't offer to help as you were there with her?

I always get a modestly blanket for the bottom half though as I have those appointments pretty much every week, wasn't sure it was routine but I'm not shy but I imagine for some it would be very uncomfortable, maybe next time you could pass her her top to hold over herself?

Hope the leaky valve doesn't cause too many issues

PicandMinx Tue 24-Jun-14 14:14:17

Lauren - did you have a chaperone?

Lauren83 Tue 24-Jun-14 14:15:22

N

Op didn't swear!

Complain, it's not on.

I remember when my mum was very poorly and in hospital and she was washed by 2 male nurses. She didn't like to make a fuss bless her but she was very upset and said she felt stripped of any dignity she had left. I think they did it because she was elderly (well only 72 but looked older because she was ill) - I bet they wouldn't treat the younger patients like that.

I wish I had complained so yes, complain complain complain.

Lauren83 Tue 24-Jun-14 14:20:09

PicandMinx No, although I had my DP with me, I have always had a chaperone for other examinations though, I have bladder probs, gynae probs and have had ivf several times so have probably had about 40 internals and if its been a male they have always called for a chaperone even though I would of been happy not to, guess its to protect themselves though too

Last week I had my legs in stirrups and the nurse chaperone was making convo with me and asked where I worked, this resulted in the professor popping his head up from between my legs and announcing looking up at me that he is a customer of mine, might be awkward for him next time I see him smile

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