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AIBU to think she was BU

(50 Posts)
lalalalyra Sat 27-Feb-16 22:38:16

This has been bugging me for a few days and wondered what you think.

I was with a relative when they received some very bad news. The initial diagnosis was done last week in terms of "We're 95% sure this is what it is and we need to do x, y and z to confirm it." The tests were done and I was with the relative when they received the confirmation.

The consultant who delivered the news introduced herself as Miss XXXX. She then confirmed to my relative that they had an illness that was terminal. My relative is only in her late 40s so this news has come completely as a shock to her. She asked several questions and on two occasions addressed the consultant as Dr. Now I know this is incorrect, but am I BU to be a bit pissed off that the consultant was really snippy about it? As in corrected her sharply, especially the second time. Even the nurse in the meeting looked a bit surprised.

I get that maybe it's annoying if people don't get your title right, but my relative couldn't even tell you what day it was at that point. She'd just been told she was dying and had thoughts of her parents, her husband etc running through her brain. She just wanted to know the answers to the questions 'Can I go home?' and 'How long have I got?'

The reason I'm thinking about it is that we've been asked to give feedback on her stay due to another issue (it took them 14 hours to organise her some insulin when hers ran out and we absolutely were not allowed to bring any from home and the nurses on the ward have asked us to complain loudly because they believe the lack of pharmacy staff is dangerous and they are not being listened too) and I don't know if it's something that should be mentioned. It was a very, very sharp "My name is Miss XXXX, not Dr XXXX." The nurse who was in the meeting very pointedly said when the complaint was mentioned "Please make sure you complain about everything that you are unhappy with... We complain about things and people a lot, but no-one listens to us" and I'm wondering how many other people the consultant has been rude too.

acasualobserver Sat 27-Feb-16 22:40:56

Yes, the consultant was being inexcusably unpleasant. You should complain.

lalalalyra Sat 27-Feb-16 22:42:04

However, on the other hand the care apart from a few little things like that was excellent. The nurses have been given a thank you card and a parcel for their tea room with tea, coffee, nice biscuits, choccies and muffins. We also gave them some nice mugs because when they brought my relative and I tea they had to use their own mugs which meant two of them couldn't have tea at break time as they have no spares. We gave the auxiliary staff a tea parcel too as they were the ones who were able to make time to sit with relative when visiting time was over the night she got the first news. The nurses were simply too busy as there is not enough of them.

So we're not complaining about everything, just the bits that need fixing.

YakTriangle Sat 27-Feb-16 22:43:01

YANBU at all. I'm sure it must be irritating for the consultant to be addressed incorrectly several times a day as I'm sure she is, but she needs to think about each circumstance separately. In that situation, it's utterly unimportant whether people call her Miss or Doctor, and it shows a real lack of care about her patient to pull her up on it at that moment.
Your relative has every reason to complain about being spoken to like that, particularly when she's just been told such shattering news.

RandomMess Sat 27-Feb-16 22:43:04

I would include it if you are complaining anyway.

A consultant is still a Dr and from a patient point of view at that point of time it's just ridiculous.

I get snippy about my name, with my colleagues yes I'd pick them up on it but to my "customer" absolutely not, to a human being I just told devastating news to - it's pretty unforgivable really!

glueandstick Sat 27-Feb-16 22:50:00

A lot of the doctors I know introduce themselves as Dr firstname when it's not good news and get called by their first names... It's a bit more human and levelling.

I would complain. The Dr had no reason to do that. There are times and places for that. This wasn't one of them.

MammaTJ Sat 27-Feb-16 22:51:13

The nurses, the people actually responsible for day to day care and who pick up on mistakes made by doctors, misses or any other professionals have asked you to complain, then you should!

My DS was in hospital and on a consultant prescribed gluten and dairy free diet. The nurses begged me to complain when every meal he was served ham and chips! I did and there have been massive changes in that hospital, which I hope are a result of my complaint!

lalalalyra Sat 27-Feb-16 22:58:11

Thanks. I'm so glad it isn't just me. I just thought it was so unnecessary. She'd just told someone in their 40's they were dying ffs. Her manner was crap imo. I don't know what her manner was like in the first meeting as my relative was on her own (another bugbear, but relative doesn't want to complain about that), but in this one it was very cold. Very much "Yes, that is what we thought so this is what is it called." No warmth at all.

MammaTJ The nurses practically begged us to complain about the pharmacy issue. They were the ones who told us the procedure the next day and one of them even downloaded the form thing (although we emailed it in the end). They are at the end of their tether with it.

It was just the way he said "We complain about things and people" and he looked at me, I was only in there to kick up about the insulin (my relative was panicking) and for that meeting so the only people I had any contact with was him, another couple of ward staff and the consultant. So I will. Relative has asked me to draft the complaint for her, she wants to help the nurses as they were so good to her, but she doesn't have the energy to write the complain so I'll put it in. She's being referred elsewhere for palliative care so at least her fears that her care could be compromised if she complained have been eased.

Thank you.

Peanuts2000 Sat 27-Feb-16 23:00:04

YaNBU. YOur poor relative. I would definitely complain. I am a nurse and I've also been with a relative when they have been given bad news about cancer. This consultant sounds like a complete bitch, who cares is she is called doctor or miss, she is still a doctor! Sounds like the nurses are trying to get people to complain so that maybe something can be said to her. I know the shock of being given bad news from a nurse and relatives point of view, you can't think straight, maybe this doctor should realise that, idiot.

VimFuego101 Sat 27-Feb-16 23:02:02

YANBU at all.

newmumwithquestions Sat 27-Feb-16 23:05:41

YANBU. Complain.

I've had to complain about something that happened at hospital and the complaints team were fantastic. I ended up contacting them to thank them about being so good! You can complain about one aspect of your care without complaining about it all and feedback helps the hospital improve how they treat other patients.

CooPie10 Sat 27-Feb-16 23:06:09

Yanbu, I would refer to a consultant as Doctorconfused she was unbelievably rude and unprofessional. Definitely complain.

Coconutty Sat 27-Feb-16 23:08:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Gatehouse77 Sat 27-Feb-16 23:14:38

I would complain, without question. Miss xxx should be able to show a more professional bedside manner, especially when delivering such shocking news.

We had issues with pharmacies when my mother was in hospital too. It's ridiculous that you can't bring your own insulin (and others in my mother's case) and are left with a situation when the patient doesn't get the correct medication.

PortobelloRoad Sun 28-Feb-16 03:39:30

My DH is a consultant, he would never ever EVER snip at someone for not calling him Mr, let alone so aggressively to someone he was delivering news like that to shock. Your story is horrifying. Complain, complain, complain, what an absolute cunt that Dr is.

I'm so sorry about your relative flowers

VinceNoirLovesHowardMoon Sun 28-Feb-16 04:12:35

Why do consultants not use their doctor title anyway? Is it some weird hierarchy thing?

sykadelic Sun 28-Feb-16 05:08:22

She definitely was unpleasant (and I would report it simply so someone tells her to learn compassion!) but I do understand why she wanted to be clear that she is not a Doctor. I assume for the same reason legal assistants/paralegals clarify they are not attorneys.

Archduke Sun 28-Feb-16 06:04:20

God what a cow. Your poor relative. Definitely report.

I was given an early pg scan years ago, as had history of miscarriage, and I still remember the totally horrible man who told me that my much wanted pg was ectopic and would result in no baby and no tube - with zero compassion. I still hate him to this day.

flowers for your friend, how utterly shit.

InYearAdmissions Sun 28-Feb-16 06:51:18

Definitely complain OP you poor relative.

I would also though mention the outstanding care you had from the nurses as often this goes unmentioned.

InYearAdmissions Sun 28-Feb-16 06:53:04

No Skyadelic that is the point she is a doctor but Consultants don't use Dr title but instead Mr or Mrs in the circumstances she was being unnecessarily pedantic

twirlypoo Sun 28-Feb-16 07:01:10

I just wanted to say yanbu, please complain, but also I am so very sorry for your relative and for you. It must have been an awful shock to receive that news, and you are both in my thoughts flowers

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Sun 28-Feb-16 07:04:54

This has actually made me a bit tearful. How disgraceful that the doctor has such little empathy they act like this.

I get called "nurse" all the time and im a midwife. Not a nurse. I have never corrected anyone, not once. It makes no difference, I know they mean me.

OneWordTwoSyllables Sun 28-Feb-16 07:15:31

Vince - it isn't that consultants don't use the title Dr. Most do. It's that surgeons don't use the title.

It goes back to surgeons not being medically trained (although they obviously are now!) It is a snobbery of sorts and many get VERY snippy about it. This situation the surgeon was more U than ever though.

My point is, it isn't the consultant part that makes the difference, it's the fact she's a surgeon.

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Sun 28-Feb-16 07:18:12

I thought it was the other way round??

All the consultants I know are Mr or Miss. I thought surgeons were still Dr even at consultant level.

OneWordTwoSyllables Sun 28-Feb-16 07:22:05

No it's surgeons that use mr / miss / Mrs. Any other doctors keep the Dr.

I know Wikipedia isn't a great link to evidence something but nonetheless - look in the history part.

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