to state the NHS has gone to the dogs, run by monkeys and staffed by halfwits?

(138 Posts)
DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:27:11

The saga........
DD has infected looking pussy blistery spots.

It is friday evening. No hope of seeing locsl GP until at least monday.

I ask the MN hive mind for advice. Possibly impetigo. Definitely sore and pussy. OOH is suggested.

I trundle off 15 miles to OOH.

We arrive. There is a notice pinned to the door, 'If you are not expected please report to the Emergency Department'.

Odd. And not what it was a few months ago but off we trot to A&E round the corner.

In A&E i say to the receptionist 'We came for the OOH GP.'

'No problem' she says. Takes some details and we get asked to take a seat.

An hour later DDs name is called.

'Senior Sister' triages DD.

First she looks me up and down and snaps 'who are you?'

I explain what the problem is and say once again 'we came for the xxx unit, the out of hours GP'

She asks not once, not twice but Four times how long DD has been pussy. I tell her Four times it has been getting worse over the last few days.

She shouts at me. 'This should be seen by your GP'.

I replied 'I know. Thats why we came to the OOH unit.'

At this point she tells me the OOH unit has moved 5 more miles away.

Then she tells me to take DD to the GP tomorrow.

I say 'but tomorrow is saturday, which is why we csme to the OOH unit'

I am then told i need to take DD the extra 5 miles to the real OOH unit which closed in 5 minutes.

I give up at this point and suggest maybe they should put a notice on the door of the now ex-OOH unit or tell their receptionists to redirect people.

Only 'they can't do that as they aren't clinical and patients need triaging'

So at this point i tell the half-witted monkey who is masquerading as a nurse that as i too am a nurse, with considerably more braincells than her i will just treat DDs pus myself.

i might then have gone and purloined approriate dressings snd stuff from my mates upstairs but that would be theiving so i shant admit to it oh no

I will be wtiting to PALS.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:28:37

There were various other remarks and stupidity.

Fucking monkeys.

rainbowinthesky Fri 08-Jun-12 20:29:27

Sounds a nightmare.

Aboutlastnight Fri 08-Jun-12 20:30:36

Why didn't you phone NHSDIRECT and get an appointment?

Certainly sounds like a bit of a cock up but it's pretty extreme to start talking about half wits and monkeys. You sound lovely.

yanbu. I work for the nhs and am a complete halfwit grin

SecretNutellaFix Fri 08-Jun-12 20:31:24

What a pigging nightmare.

sensuallettuce Fri 08-Jun-12 20:31:43

I soooo read the second line wrong blush.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:31:53

I too work for the NHS. I however am not a monkey. The person i saw this evening was.

Lacrymosa12 Fri 08-Jun-12 20:32:00

Sounds like you had a bad experience but we're not all twats.

ThePathanKhansWitch Fri 08-Jun-12 20:33:16

YABU. Sorry you've had a horrible experience.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:33:20

I am exhausted.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:35:40

Obviously not all twats. Look at me! I'm practically perfect.

All it would have taken to quench my ire was a little notice on the door.

Just a little sign. 'OIH moved to xxx'. Easy as that.

Also i don't like being catsbummed unnecessarily.

pointythings Fri 08-Jun-12 20:35:51

I don't blame you, OP (another NHS worker here, though not clinical and definitely not a monkey). Your DD has likely impetigo. You should have been able to see OOH GP, get prescription for antibiotics and get sorted.

There is no excuse for this sort of terrible signposting. At. All. Ditto the rudeness from the nurse. Go to PALS and complain.

NHS direct doesn't give appointments does it?

A notice directing to the new OOH would have been preferable.

And I hate it when after some angsting you decide it does need to be seen by someone, then you get told basically you're wasting time.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:37:14

I only catsbum when necessary.

I flipping told her i knew it wasn't an A&E problem.

HeadsShouldersKneesandToes Fri 08-Jun-12 20:38:27

I sympathise for this horendous experience but I have to defend the NHS. It is actually brilliant (although under way too much pressure thanks to Dave and Gideon prioritising tax cuts for their mates of course) and staffed by dedicated and hard-working people who, yes, sometimes aren't perfect what with being human but do a damn sight better than the alternatives we'd be stuck with without the NHS.

Aboutlastnight Fri 08-Jun-12 20:38:59

Doesn't NHS direct tell you which OOH are open and where and let them know you are on your way?

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:44:27

I foolidhly assumed the system hadn't changed. I work in the sodding building ffs. You'd think i'd know.

ThePinkPussycat Fri 08-Jun-12 20:47:53

But NHS Direct, would, in theory, know that OOH had moved.

ThePinkPussycat Fri 08-Jun-12 20:50:00

Head I agree on the whole, but the notice was hardly helpful was it? So often common sense seems to be lacking with the small details of life that make a big difference - and I don't just mean in the NHS.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:52:06

Bit i couldmt be arsed to find the number. Phone. Wait. Queue. Explain. then go.

Nhs direct was unnecessary.

ReportMeNow Fri 08-Jun-12 20:53:41

Ahhhh, how frustrating. Idiocy and lack of compassion (in any walk of life) that makes you want to scream. Why couldn't she have treated dd?

But mostly, I do think the NHS are wonderful

so YABU, especially as you work in the NHS!

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 20:55:31

And DD is still pussy. Or pusy. Or pusie?

Poor pus plagued brat.

Aboutlastnight Fri 08-Jun-12 20:57:39

I too work in the NHs and have to say most of the time it works just fine bit there are those times when patients have perfectly sensible reasonable requests and for some reason it all goes tits up, one from one inept episode to another. I've no idea why this happens.

nonapandknackered Fri 08-Jun-12 21:00:36

YANBU for being extremely pissed off, but you are BU for tarring the whole NHS with the same brush.

I'd have been bloody furious if I'd have been you and the nurse would have had a mouthful from me without a doubt. But during my rant I would have pointed out that I too am an NHS worker (AHP) and that it is stupidity like that, that makes the general public think that the NHS is going to the dogs and is staffed by halfwits.
Which clearly isn't true and you and I work for them, OP grin.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 21:04:56

Humph. I begrudginly accept that perhaps there are some non-halfwit-monkeys working for the NHS. Some of it might be alright. And of course i am U.

Still infuriated though.

HMQueenElizabeth Fri 08-Jun-12 21:05:43

Why didn't you take her to the GP sooner though? Isn't OOH GP for semi-serious, came over suddenly, type things? Genuine question... Don't bite my head off. smile

Sassybeast Fri 08-Jun-12 21:09:12

So it's been getting worse for a few days and you decide to get her seen on a Friday evening......

Halfwittery not just confined to the NHS eh ?

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 21:10:26

Because i work silly hours and like all good health professionals ignore stuff until it actually needs treating. Just so happened that by the time it had actually gone pussy and looked red and she was moaning that it was sore it was friday evening.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 21:11:59

I do the; ignore it and it will either go away or turn into something more serious, school.

Works for me.

Mama1980 Fri 08-Jun-12 21:13:11

Sorry you had such a bad experience. But Yabu I'm very biased thoigh-the NHS drs and nurses saved my life and my baby s and we had months in hospital with numerous operations that without the NHS or super charged health insurance we could not possibly have afforded. So I think the NHS is bloody brilliant grin I am very sorry you had a lousy experience though and I hope your child is ok.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 21:14:11

Oh she's bloody fine. My feelings are bruised though.

FiftyShadesofViper Fri 08-Jun-12 21:22:28

Hello again DameHermione. I am another NHS halfwit! You know the NHS is wonderful really just incredibly irritating when you have experiences like tonight, common sense is really in short supply sometimes. I often think the NHS should provide walls to bang heads on.

Can I just point out to you though the OOH doctor is intended for when you cannot get an appointment and really need to be seen before it is going to be possible. Your GP will be billed for your visit tonight and will no doubt be really happy about it as it wasn't really necessary

stoatie Fri 08-Jun-12 21:23:08

I know where you are coming from BUT as another seasoned NHS worker of the "oh it will be fine" school of parenting who like you then ends up on Friday night thinking "shit - maybe this does need treatment" - do you not have to ring your GP surgery - which even though you know is closed - gives you the OOH number so you can ring and get an appointment and check its location (ours seems to move regularly - was in a health centre, then next door to A & E - not sure if it still is). therefore YABU for bypasssing the procedure because as an NHS worker you know there is " a care pathway" for sodding everything and that you must follow said pathway and never detour wink

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 21:27:38

Hello fifty.

if my own GP was able to give me an sppointment for said pussy child sooner than next thursday i'd be perfectly happy.

See. Run by monkeys. Who decides the GP appointment system? Who decides who gets billed for what? And which stupid fool decides to close an OOH unit without advertiding it to the locak community?

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 21:30:37



however. The daft woman i just saw ws a cow. And a sign on the door would be useful.

Elkieb Fri 08-Jun-12 21:37:12

Well, if you pay us peanuts and cut our pensions the 5* service will stop there. I'm very angry about what they are doing to the nhs, my employer. But, after all it is 'gold plated' hmm

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 21:43:32

Hmm. Maybe she'd just opened her psyslip. Or checked the off duty.

COCKadoodledooo Fri 08-Jun-12 21:44:24

Our OOH is triaged over the phone. Maybe you should have called first.

Hope dd's better soon.

ethelb Fri 08-Jun-12 21:45:29

@dame one of the most shocking things about the nhs is that gp apps and prescriptions are controlled by untrained receptionists.

however, you do generally have to make an app with ohh gp. who would prob have been happy to see your daughter is you had called. I've been with a bladder infection, which tbh sounds less serious.

MammaTJ Fri 08-Jun-12 21:47:00

YANBU, the service you got was crap.
I am so grateful for our little Minor Injures Unit. We are at the ends of the earth where we live, 22 miles from the nearest 'proper' hospital. We are also 20 miles from the nearest out of hours on call docs. They normally tell us to go to MIU. There are marvelous Nurse consultants there, they give the very best care and refer to proper hospital if necessary.
In your case, they would have given appropriate treatment. When I had a strangulated hernia, they gave very good pain relief until ambulance arrived.
When my DS had an inf after an op on his eye they told us to take him to the proper hosp. All as it should be!!
Bet you wish you lived at the end of the earth like me! <feeling grateful>

lurkerspeaks Fri 08-Jun-12 21:47:34

I don't understand why you didn't phone up to make an OOH appointment. Then you would have 1) had an appointment for a relatively fixed time (hollow laugh) and 2) found out they had moved....

Or maybe not ( I speak as a person who phoned to make a restaurant reservation and then turned up at the wrong branch. I didn't know they had opened a second one down the road!)

WorraLiberty Fri 08-Jun-12 21:47:37

I know hindsight is a wonderful thing but I would never go to an OOHs surgery without phoning first.

And I don't even know why...I suppose it just wouldn't feel right to turn up without having rang ahead.

Sorry about your experience though, hope your DD's ok.

rookanga Fri 08-Jun-12 21:54:08

Im surprised that anyone would try to go to an OOH centre without phoning first. Where I am they wont see people who just turn up, only those who have been asked to attend after phone triage. If your OOH had the same procedure that might be why they didnt have a notice out the front, because they would be expecting to tell everyone where to attend.

duckdodgers Fri 08-Jun-12 22:01:03

Dont know how it works in England but here in Scotland you cant just turn up at OOH you have to phone NHS 24 (our telephone equivalent of NHS Direct) and they make an appointment for you.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 22:16:07


Maybe if i.used tbe nhs system more often i'd know how to do it properly.

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 22:17:57

Although it has to be said. If you rock ip in uniform with a quite obviously broken finger thry are not do bad.

rookanga Fri 08-Jun-12 22:21:19

If you phone your GP when they are shut you should get a recorded message telling you how to proceed if you need to be seen before they reopen.

I think that the repeated references to the nursing staff as monkeys is offensive.

WhyAlwaysBoris Fri 08-Jun-12 22:22:30

OP, i feel your pain.

OK, maybe with hindsight you could have called up, but what annoys me about this sort of situation is the complete lack of gumption (not to mention manners) in the people concerend.

Why, at no time in that hours wait, did it occur to them to suggest you went to the right place? Its not that hard surely?

Or after an hour wait when it was realised that you were at the wrong place, could they not have apologised for the misunderstanding and phoned up the right place to see if there was still time to see you?

This would be normal behaviour in most places but for some reason the standards to which many of these people seem to work seem so low in comparison to the real world.

I used to be very PRO the NHS but after my experiences this year, i can only conclude that as well as some lovely, dedicated, hardworking staff, there are some complete idiots who wouldn't be tolerated in the private sector and it must drive the competent, hardworking staff absolutely nuts and i can't understand why they aren't honest about it, they must know.

And i wouldn't hold out much hope with PALS either....
This is word for word a conversation i had with them today:

Me- hello this is xx i've just picked up a message on my phone asking me to call but they didn't leave a name so i don't know who to ask for

Them- Oh it wasn't me, i don't think anyone else here has called anyone, it must be a different department

Me- but they left this number

Them- Well maybe they left the wrong number

Me- but they did say they were from PALS. It must be someone there.

Them- No-one has been using the phones this morning

Me- can you just ask, please?

Them- Hold on (long silence)

Them 2 hello xxx, Thanks for calling me back, i have tried to reach you a few times this morning

Me- thats because i can't answer this number at work and i have specifically asked you not to ring it.

Them 2- well no-one told me, all i've got is the email from you

Me- it was in the email

And so on and so on. the third time they've called me on that number, the third time i've asked them not too. Surely not that hard??

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 22:27:35

No non the nurse was half-witted. The 'people' in charge are monkeys.

COCKadoodledooo Fri 08-Jun-12 22:27:46

So, not using the NHS system that often, wuld you just rock up at the GP surgery without an appointment too, or would you phone first?

DameHermione Fri 08-Jun-12 22:29:05

GP surgery. No.

Drop in OOH unit. Yes. Clue is in the name. Or used to be.

worrywortisworrying Fri 08-Jun-12 22:34:41

YABU for calling people who work for the NHS halfwits or monkeys.

They work under extreme pressure, extreme stress and, often, extreme abuse.

I once had to take DS to Urgent care early on a Sunday morning (so what many people would call a Saturday night) and it was CARNAGE. HOrrible drunk people with stupid, self inflicted injuries wailing about how their night had been ruined because they were being made wait.

And, I can honestly say, when the chips are down... I'd prefer to be WITH the NHS and all of it's problems than without it.

COCKadoodledooo Fri 08-Jun-12 22:46:46

Oh. Never heard of a drop in OOH, always had to phone first. Mind you, until I had the dc's I'd never heard of ooh hmm

cutegorilla Fri 08-Jun-12 22:50:17

Not all places expect you to phone first. Our OOH is provided by the "walk in centre" the clue is in the name there too. There is no need to phone first. It's so frustrating when people can't apply a bit of common sense. When you first rocked up to A&E saying you were looking for OOH surely the appropriate response was "That's not here it's at... "

There are, of course, some wonderful people working for the NHS. I'm very glad it exists. It has huge problems though, and some idiots working there too, sadly.

slacklucy Fri 08-Jun-12 22:56:56

well stupid signs & rude staff are a PITA but the NHS is still the best thing this country has & we should all protect it.

So YABU one bad day doesnt mean the entire NHS has gone tits up

Primrose123 Fri 08-Jun-12 23:03:19

YA partly BU.

DS has been in hospital this week, it may possibly be run by monkeys, as I wasn't impressed by how things were organised, but I have to say the staff were amazing. Without exception, each nurse, doctor, paramedic, cleaner and everyone else that we met was friendly, professional and kind.

featherbag Fri 08-Jun-12 23:17:25

You turned up at the wrong place, instead of calling OOH for an appointment. A quick google would've told you that you needed to call. Then you booked in at A&E. Once you're booked in, a nurse has to see you before you go anywhere. As someone who's spent many a frustrating shift in triage, I can tell you that if you waited an hour for triage the department was being battered. The number of people in the waiting room is no indication of what's going on behind the scenes! So you go to the nurse, who can only send you away to consult GP land (whether in or out of hours is irrelevant, to her, this has no bearing on whether or not the problem needs to be treated in A&E), or keep you in A&E for treatment. She cannot do anything else - she can't get you an appointment, she can't bump you through NHS Direct's queue, she can't just bung you some dressing and antibiotics because she'll lose her job if she's caught.

After all of that, you tell the poor woman that you'll treat it yourself?! Of course she's got an attitude problem, you're probably the 200th person she's seen today who's rocked up at A&E because they don't fancy going through the proper channels, then got all huffy with her because she couldn't help!

YABU. Except for expecting the nurse to behave in a professional manner no matter how stressed she is, YANBU to expect that, I hope that I manage to do that in RL with real patients!

And the word is 'purulent'.

FiftyShadesofViper Fri 08-Jun-12 23:59:53

There is a good point here though, the NHS is a fantastic service delivered by incredibly good healthcare professionals (generally) but sometimes the planning of services is just shit.

Having said that, we are just dealing with issues for a sick elderly relative in a country with a private, piecemeal healthcare system and i think we all need to be very, very afraid if this is what "call me Dave" has in mind for us. Our NHS level of shit just does not begin to compare.

Anniegetyourgun Sat 09-Jun-12 00:09:19

If DD was pussy perhaps you could have talked the vet into seeing her.

<clean minded emoticon>

Salmotrutta Sat 09-Jun-12 00:38:32

Hmm ... my DH works in the "back-rooms" of the NHS.

If he and his colleagues were half-wits a fair few people would die actually.

And that is a fact.

I'm not going to say what he or his colleages do because it might be identifiable but it is crucial to saving lives.

My DH and his colleagues are not half-wits or monkeys.

You don't give the location of the pus-filled spots but if they are mucosal in origin (as opposed to epdermal) then they needed to be seen. Don't muck about next time.

Salmotrutta Sat 09-Jun-12 00:39:17


sugarice Sat 09-Jun-12 08:42:22

How's dd and her oozy pusticles this morning Dame?

DameHermione Sat 09-Jun-12 10:19:19


cwtch4967 Sat 09-Jun-12 13:33:57

In my area you have to phone OOHs then a GP phones you back to triage and ofers advice or an appointment - you wont be seen if you just turn up at OOHs. System works well here..................

valiumredhead Sat 09-Jun-12 15:28:10

Have you covered her yucky blisters? Has she picked up her dirty towels yet? wink

DameHermione Sat 09-Jun-12 15:33:14

The pustules are covered. The towels are on a 90 degree wash.

She tried hugging me a while ago so i flapped her away and ran shrieking to the bleach cupboard.

valiumredhead Sat 09-Jun-12 16:09:02

I would too! In fact I'd send ds off to stay with Granny wink

StepOutOfSpring Sat 09-Jun-12 16:12:42

YANBU. How hard is it to put up a notice? It's just common sense - but that left the NHS a long time ago!

FioFio Sat 09-Jun-12 16:14:27

surely you can treat impetigo at home?

valiumredhead Sat 09-Jun-12 16:17:00

You need anti b's for impy tiger.

FioFio Sat 09-Jun-12 16:29:49

i thought it was just anitbiotic cream? i have got it over the counter

have things changed so much confused

and i find the nhs fine with my very severely disabled child with chronic epilespy so I do it find it weird that people complain so much about minor skin complaints that spread like wildfird tbh wink

PropertyNightmare Sat 09-Jun-12 16:42:48

Yanbu. What a carry on and what a pitiful excuse for healthcare.

ceeveebee Sat 09-Jun-12 17:06:18

Whenever I call NHS Direct they always just tell me to go and see GP or go to A & E

Outside normal hours we have to call OOH line, they triage over the phone then tell you to come to the OOH centre if serious enough. You can't just turn up

There is also a walk in centre for minor injuries etc, don't think they would prescribe anti biotics though (not sure)

angeltattoo Sat 09-Jun-12 20:56:14

The NHS is generallly wonderful. But I would say that - I work for it and witness wonderful care and treatment being to given to all people, regardless of their ability to pay on a daily basis.

However, as a patient - i turned up for the second appointment of the day, to be told I won't be seen before 11:45am - this is shocking, doctor not even in clinic! As a user of the NHS' I can see this is frustrating. As a staff member, I suspect that said doctor was on rounds and giving people the time and attention they deserved, like they did for me when they eventually turned up in clinic.

OP is a fine example of one of the many wonderful people working on behalf of an NHS that the con-dems are trying to ruin, because, clearly, if you are special/important/dishonest enought to be able to pay then you are much more deserving than a poor person.

Actually, that wasn't what you asked was it? Ignore me! The nurse in me too adopts a 'watch and wait' approach, because unless it's falling off, it can't be too bad, can it? Having said that, when my Dad was ill with SPINAL CORD COMPRESSION I expect this to be treated, even on a Sunday morning, and the poor 22 year old girl who could barely do a neuro exam on him was representiative of your experience of fuckwittery!

angeltattoo Sat 09-Jun-12 20:58:43

So I feel your pain and YANBU. grin

And miserable and unorofessional nurses give us all a bad name.

Leverette Sat 09-Jun-12 21:31:18

run by monkeys and staffed by halfwits

Did you mean to sound so rude?

DameHermione Sat 09-Jun-12 22:01:16

Yes leverette. I did.

edam Sat 09-Jun-12 22:05:02

oh FFS that is ridiculous! OOHRs is notorious for being a maze that is impossible for a mere patient to navigate, but your experience really is beyond parody.

myBOYSareBONKERS Sat 09-Jun-12 22:17:23

if you could treat it your self - why did you go in the first place?

funkybuddah Sat 09-Jun-12 23:29:28

I saw your op, you admitted you left it a long time to get her seen too, it was not an accident or an emergency, you didn't have an appointment .

Yes she was rude but there are people that need treating as a serious matter.

If people on mn hadn't sent 'only tigers' you wouldn't have even gone.

YABVVVU to brand the NHS the way you have, enjoy the reforms and look forward to the days when your experience seemed good (you think its shit now just wait and see)

The NHS does have some very pointless people within it, but it is very unlikely to be the medical staff that work their arses off, to unachievable targets and in conditions that most people wouldn't accept in employment.

She shouldn't have been so rude and that was not ok but to contact pals? Just go to the go on Monday.

funkybuddah Sat 09-Jun-12 23:31:05

That should be 'impy' and go to the gp stupid phone

nymets Sat 09-Jun-12 23:32:05

why didn't you just ask a pharmacist? impetigo is hardly an emergency

i werks fur da nhessss tu
ooh ooh ooh
Lol at all the people coming on to educate the OP on how hard they work

PeanutButterCupCake Sat 09-Jun-12 23:42:29

That's the thing I enjoy about my job the most, how much the public value us.

<<makes new work badge...Peanut, senior half wit>>

The OP works for the NHS too

PeanutButterCupCake Sat 09-Jun-12 23:43:33

stealth have you been at the wine? grin

I wish!! No, just was doing my best halfwit, followed by my best monkey, though i fear it does not come across well in print

PeanutButterCupCake Sat 09-Jun-12 23:46:19

Ha ha stealth grin

Didn't get it <<halfwit emoticon>>

NannyPlumIsMyMum Sat 09-Jun-12 23:51:26

I am nurse . Long time qualified .

it is now staffed by arrogant berks who don't have a brain cell between them.

If people only knew the REAL state of the NHS. It's diabolical . And scary. RIP NHS ( thanks to Spameron and his fag hag Lansley who have practically privatised it anyway )

Wasn't it monkeys who wrote most of Shakespeare's plays anyway? Or am I thinking of something else? wink

NannyPlumIsMyMum Sat 09-Jun-12 23:55:38

Flo impetigo isn't just a minor skin complaint. It can make people feel really quite unwell - and sometimes requires oral antibiotics in addition to cream.
So no a trip to the pharmacist wouldn't suffice.

noobydoo Sat 09-Jun-12 23:57:49

YANBU - I feel it is run by halfwits too.

mamadoc Sun 10-Jun-12 00:06:26

I've been told its not an A&E problem when I brought my DD there once. They saw her anyway. I just thought well tbh its not helpful of you to say that as I'm hardly going to rock up at 3am with a 3yr old whilst heavily pregnant unless I thought it was an emergency. You don't agree but I thought it was so I did what I thought best. My crystal ball was malfunctioning that day!

I think staff should avoid judging people as far as possible. Maybe a bit of re-education but not turning people away. In the end its your job to be professional which doesn't include cats bum faces or shouting at patients whatever you may think of them (and I speak as someone who has endured my fair share of drunk, sweary people in A&E).

featherbag Sun 10-Jun-12 00:12:33

There's no excuse for rudeness (except when faced with accusations of being an arrogant berk without a shared brain cell, NannyPlum if you've been qualified that long you should know better), but believe me when I say that if we turned no-one away the whole service would grind to a total standstill. Mamadoc you wouldn't believe what people will come to A&E for, honest you wouldn't!

mamadoc Sun 10-Jun-12 00:23:04

I've admittedly not done triage but I have worked in A&E a lot so I can well believe how trivial some of it is. My own best encounters included a woman who ran out of tampax and thought we might have some (I think we gave her some as well) and someone who called an ambulance for a bee sting not to mention all the homeless people who fancy a bed and a sarnie when its cold.

In my line of work its the drunk 'suicidal' people who are the worst. Well maybe they did say to someone at some point that they wanted to die but right now they can't stand upright and are vomiting on my shoes and by the time they are fit enough to speak they will have forgotten anyway!

I still think that on the whole everyone should get a sympathetic hearing. I've sometimes heard staff be nasty about people they regard as a nuisance eg repeat self harmers but if you know the back story it can put a whole fresh perspective on things.

DameHermione Sun 10-Jun-12 08:28:31

I will say one final time so listen closeely...



BerryJubileeCheesecake Sun 10-Jun-12 09:30:25

How is your dd this morn hermione?

DameHermione Sun 10-Jun-12 09:37:16

Still oozing

rogersmellyonthetelly Sun 10-Jun-12 09:53:29

Don't even get me started on the out of ours service. Found out I was pg on Saturday morning last week. By Sunday I ha developed severe toothache. Called local care direct to be told there were no emergency dental appointments left and I would have to visit my own dentist on Wednesday after bank holiday. I knew that the toothache was an infection as I had a root canal on this tooth last year so couldn't be a dodgy tooth, and also I was feeling shivery and unwell with it. Told them this and they still insisted that I needed A dentist as gp cannot precribe antibiorics for dental pain. I suffered through until Wednesday on paracetamol and prayers.
Wednesday Morning when I saw my own dentist who took one look at my puffy face, touched the tooth in question and told me it was an infection but that he wasnt comfortable giving antibiotics as I am pregnant and I needed to see the gp. I luckily managed to get an appt with the gp later that afternoon who took my temp (38.5) prescribed me antibiotics and swore under his breath a few times about bloody idiots in out of hours should have sent me to the gp straight away as pregnant woman complaining of fever shouldn't be left for 4 days in agony. I have to say I agreed with him.

rookanga Sun 10-Jun-12 09:58:41

Was the GP not irritated that there wasn't an emergency dental service that you could access and then when you did see one they wouldn't prescribe? A GP is not qualified to treat dental conditions.

edam Sun 10-Jun-12 10:12:53

rook - it's all very well GPs being irritated but what the hell is the poor patient supposed to do when they are in pain and suffering and the flipping dental service lets them down? Dental ill-health can cause other health problems too - there are proven links between gum disease and heart disease, for instance. And it is monstrous to leave a pregnant woman without antibiotics for four days. GPs may not be able to carry out root canal surgery but they can certainly spot an infection and prescribe antibiotics.

Gentleness Sun 10-Jun-12 10:48:16

Occasion 1: NHS Direct didn't know my GP surgery existed. I gave them the names of 3 drs there and the street name and the name over the front door. They wanted me to find the postcode for them. I reminded them I'd called because I was anxious about my son's soaring temperatures and said no way was I leaving him because their systems weren't up to date. She accused me of not telling her it was a new surgery: it's been there over 10 years. 2 hours delays while they tried to work out which OOHC we should go to while I fumed and wondered about going to A&E but had been told to wait.

Occasion 2: NHS Direct told me to get my son to A&E fast but I stupidly rejected an ambulance thinking it was overkill and spending public money and all that. Reading the discharge notes later, I was angry to see the dr got them wrong and basically implied there was little reason to bring him in the first place - they told me they had no links to NHSDirect so couldn't follow up why I'd been told to take him in.

So - YES the systems can be rubbish and those using them incompetent BUT on so many other occasions (2 births, 2 operations, PND etc etc) staff were lovely, kind, competent, understanding and went the extra mile, often despite the systems.

rookanga Sun 10-Jun-12 11:02:24

edam - It was a dental problem. I wasn't blaming rogers for ending up at the GPs, just that it doesn't seem acceptable for an OOH dental service to just say that there are no appointments left and leave someone with an abcess for days.

Latara Sun 10-Jun-12 11:15:37

I haven't seen any actual monkeys at my local hospital.
They tend to live in jungles or zoos.

But i'm a nurse & half-wit. Half witty & half serious.

Not all hospital staff are perfect, but as an outpatient, & relative to inpatients myself - i can say that the vast majority of my experiences have been positive. (& i don't tell people that i'm a nurse when i'm outside work, unless they ask what job i do.)

Complaining to PALS is a good idea in cases of bad treatment, because certain people don't learn to improve their attitude / practice unless they are told that they need to.

edam Sun 10-Jun-12 11:39:09

Oh, in that case we are in agreement.

OOHRs is well known for being a nightmare, disorganised and disconnected when you are dealing with straightforward medical problems requiring a doc or nurse, let alone when dentistry is thrown into the mix.

sugarice Sun 10-Jun-12 12:08:30

Can she go to school tomorrow or is impy tiger astay at home condition?

sugarice Sun 10-Jun-12 12:08:48

* a stay

DameHermione Sun 10-Jun-12 12:11:27

She has maths GCSE tomorrow.

Nancy66 Sun 10-Jun-12 12:14:34

god, I wish MN had an editing facility.

you desperately need to re-write the second line of your post. Reads like she has herpes

Grumpystiltskin Sun 10-Jun-12 12:15:00

I do an OOH dental job for four hours on Sundays. I get paid f all compared to running a private emergency dentist but I do it because I feel I am helping some really poorly people.
Once our appointments are gone, they are gone and I think it's pretty unreasonable to expect an unlimited service on a Sunday for what would cost you £17.50 IF you were eligible for NHS charges which ye majority of our patients aren't.

Pretty straightforward I think rook

DameHermione Sun 10-Jun-12 12:17:49

Holy shit. 300 posts later and i never noticed!

how is pusy pussy pussie pusie pusey spelled?

Nancy66 Sun 10-Jun-12 12:18:23

pus-filled would be better

nevergoogle Sun 10-Jun-12 12:19:21

YOU should have taken her to the GP earlier during normal hours.
It is YOUR responsibility.
If you knew what the problem was and could treat it yourself...WTF?
Stop it now, you're making a halfwit of yourself.

rookanga Sun 10-Jun-12 12:21:53

Grumpy - Other OOH services cant turn people away just because they have seen some predetermined number of patients. Maybe its a problem with the way that services are commissioned?

bighooraytoday Sun 10-Jun-12 12:23:05

'to state the NHS has gone to the dogs, run by monkeys and staffed by halfwits?'

Obviously, yes, YABU to state this on the basis of one experience and v rude.

Yes, the signposting should have been better and yes, the nurse sounds rude but I don' think you handled the situation v sensibly either.

Your DD has had the spots for several days but you don't see the GP.

Instead of making your own decision (you say you are a nurse), you ask MN.

On the basis of that, you suddenly decide that it may be impetigo which needs seeing immediately on a Friday evening! As a nurse, surely you must know that waiting until the morning is not going to make any difference (assuming that DD is not unwell which you don't mention). A&E is notoriously busy on Fri/ Sat evenings (which you should also know as a nurse).

Instead of calling the OOH service to find out the available services (whether on Friday/ Sat), you decide to just turn up. A lot of OOH services operate on booked appointments not sit and wait and it would have been much better to have checked and not just turned up, particularly with a young child in the evening. It is your fault that you didn't do this and that it added to your irritation of being passed from pillar to post.

At this point, you should have gone home and called, not gone to A&E. It is clearly not an accident or an emergency if she has had it for several days and is not unwell.

So, overall, the situation was totally avoidable and mostly of your making. It's not fair of you not to think the situation through properly (particularly as a nurse), and then blame everyone else without taking any responsibility yourself.

DameHermione Sun 10-Jun-12 12:23:36

I know. Its what i'm best at. In my defence i'd had quite a lot of red wine when i wrote the original rant.

Also work got in the way of normal hours GP appointment. and By the time it had turned nasty it was after hours

rookanga Sun 10-Jun-12 12:24:28

Are you for real?

DameHermione Sun 10-Jun-12 12:29:52

BigH have you actually read any of what i wrote?

I. Know.

I am an arse. I am an arse who knows nothing about skin. I am an arse who thought the Walk In Centre was just that. It was last time I looked.

I work.

Said pus had got worse when I got home from work. Which happened to be on friday evening.

Knowing nothing about skin or pus I asked for advice.

I tried.

Obviously I screwed up.

BUT..... There is no call for being spoken to like dirt and there should have been an easier way to point me in the right direction.

Grumpystiltskin Sun 10-Jun-12 12:32:10

Rook, it definitely is the way services are commissioned. When I first became an NHS dentist we were responsible for our own patients in an emergency and would go in, open up the surgery and fix them. the government used to pay us per "opening" and then for the treatment. So if you opened once & saw three people you would get one opening then three whatevers. Extractions, temp fillings etc.

Now the PCT is supposed to provide all ooh dental services. This is exceptionally expensive because i will get paid the same whether we see 12 patients or 2 (royal wedding bank hol only gave us 2!). There is also a nurse and a receptionist who must be paid, the result is a short service so the PCT can tick the box to say they're covered when actually the service is too short.

rookanga Sun 10-Jun-12 12:34:09

It sounds a bit like the GP thing then, taking responsibility away for OOH cover from the individual practices and then being surprised that it is expensive to replace.

Sirzy Sun 10-Jun-12 12:39:54

I have never known an OOH where you didn't need to phone, be traiged then go in.

The NHS is fantastic on the whole and something very much taken for granted

Grumpystiltskin Sun 10-Jun-12 12:46:25

Apparently each emergency attendance cost the NHS £40ish when we were responsible, now it's more like £300. Ridiculous. Short sighted but we did all tell them this is what would happen.

rookanga Sun 10-Jun-12 12:49:11

Plus the cost of inappropriate GP attendance with dental problems...

Latara Sun 10-Jun-12 13:29:28

haha at the red wine - it's the favourite drink of many nurses.

I don't drink because i'm angelicly saintly (on meds).
But when i did i never enjoyed red wine.

Tip: when you get home have a relaxing hot drink instead; if you do have alcohol & feel cross then STEP AWAY from the internet...

It's easy to get things out of proportion when you are already stressed.
But you should have gone to a late opening pharmacy - they sell lotions for impetigo (if it was that).

With rashes - first do the glass test for menigitis / sepsis type rash, if it's that type of rash THEN do go to A&E.
If the patient has a high temp but it's not a sepsis rash - then phone your emergency GP.
As a nurse, you will know the symptoms of bad infection & cellulitis; if you suspect that then also phone the emergency GP.
Otherwise go to the local pharmacist for some lotion / calamine / anti-histamine & see the GP during normal hours.

Good luck for your DD's Maths GCSE - not fun, i hate maths! x

aldiwhore Sun 10-Jun-12 14:44:08

YANBU to think a walk in centre is something to be walked in to... however, out of hours is different (well it is round here) along with the name change (from WIC to OOH) came a new shiny appointment system which adds at least 5 hours to the proceedings, sometimes more 'if A+E is busy' (because the steal Drs from the OOH surgery to save people's lives the selfish bastards).

YANBU to feel frustrated at bad management. YABU to refer to someone as a Monkey, when you're probably the 3743020484645 non emergency OOH patient they've had to explain the terrible management to, and they can't exactly control things can they?

You obviously knew how to treat this ailment, do you not stock up on Fucidin cream? You're a bit of a monkey nurse yourself then aren't you? wink

YANBU to being utterly pissed off at the illogical management of OOH surgeries, that they're getting less efficient not more, and its nothing to do with staff but managers and they're bright bloody ideas.

Latara Sun 10-Jun-12 15:14:03

I will defend my local OOH surgery - they will take walk-ins if not busy - if not you have to phone the GP for the emergency number.
They do triage you on the phone via a nurse, then the GP will phone you (IME quite soon after you call) - if they think it is an urgent issue that they can sort out then they will give you an appt time relevant to the urgency.
If they think you are worrying too much they will reassure over the phone, but tell you to phone back if you need to.
The receptionist is usually a paramedic filling in - they are always lovely & sympathetic.

If you have a potential life threatening or disabling problem like chest pain / severe allergic reaction / suspected stroke / severe injury / vomiting blood etc then phone 999 immediately - paramedics would rather visit someone whose symptoms / injuries aren't as serious as they thought, than find a body IYKWIM.

Anything else serious but you aren't sure what to do - then phone the emergency GP number.

McHappyPants2012 Sun 10-Jun-12 21:41:17

so as a nurse, you took a possible infectious child into a busy waiting room. Never heard of infection control i take it.

I work in the nhs ( Domestic) and if i suspected an infection that was ozing i would phone ahead and make sure they had a private room to stop other people getting the infection.

Greatauntirene Sun 10-Jun-12 22:11:22

how is pusy pussy pussie pusie pusey spelled?

Well don't look up pussy on google.

Latara Sun 10-Jun-12 22:20:32


cutegorilla Sun 10-Jun-12 22:50:01

Aren't hospital and Drs waiting rooms always full of infectious people? If everyone who was ill and potentially infectious had a private room it could get a bit ridiculous!

MyBaby1day Tue 12-Jun-12 07:23:59

NO!, YANBU, the NHS has really gone down the pan!. Something needs to be done about it!. Yes, run by monkeys and staffed by halfwits as you said. It's true!.

Sirzy Tue 12-Jun-12 07:24:54

Who would have thought half wits could save so many lives hey!

Aboutlastnight Tue 12-Jun-12 08:15:09

I've just spent my night dispatching ambulances, drs, district nurses - half wits in charge of half wits!

<eats some peanuts>

shergar Tue 12-Jun-12 09:32:26

YABU. If you need to see a GP out of hours, you ring the usual number for your GP surgery and follow the instructions given on the answering machine. You get given a second number to ring out of hours, you speak to a nurse, a GP rings you back and you get an appointment at an OOH centre if he/she feels you need one. It's really not that difficult. Turning up unannounced and expecting to be seen anyway is not the way to do it, particularly when you don't know that an OOH centre even exists where you've turned up and you end up dragging a child with a highly contagious skin condition around with you in an A&E waiting area filled with sick old people etc.

I know who I think the halfwit is, and it's not the NHS staff in this saga.

Shiftinglard Tue 12-Jun-12 09:43:25

As somebody who has worked in A&E and a minor injuries unit, what I used to find unreasonable was the monkeys who waited all week with ailments which should be seen by the GP and then deciding on Friday night they really need to be seen and use an emergency service.

What I find even more astounding is that a nurse would do this

YABU you should have taken your daughter to the GP in the week.

AnnieArsehole Tue 12-Jun-12 10:12:05


Only have admiration and respect for the nhs.

I had to use 999 a few weeks back for what turned out for kidney stones (yes,renal colic hurts like hell on earth) and can't fault paramedics and a&e,ward staff.prompt,professional and FREE treatment? Yeah it's going to the dogs huh hmm

Yabu- if you saw what they do for cancer patients, you would see just how great the nhs still is.
There are parts of it that need improving but without the nhs, we would be stuck paying for highly expensive treatment.

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