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6 yr old fell over outside clinic - they wouldn't give her first aid

(38 Posts)
assumedname Thu 21-Jul-05 16:23:12

Just been to the local centre where they do enuresis appointments, baby weigh ins, counselling etc. Health visitors are based there and also district nurses.

My 6 year old was running along the pavement outside and went a complete purler, ending up skidding along the pavement on her right cheek.

Obviously really upset, badly grazed cheek, cut hand, grazed shoulder, red chin, nose and that bit above your lip, red knees. Dirt in all the grazes.

I took her back inside for first aid. They didn't have a first aid kit, no first aider and the district nurses wouldn't help in case something went wrong (and, presumbably, led to them being sued).

What is the world coming to?

I then had to take my 11 yr old out of her appointment so I could go home and treat the 6 yr old.

Do you think I should complain to the health authority or am I wasting my time?

northerner Thu 21-Jul-05 16:28:40

What? I can't beleive this. This is one place that should have a first aid box IMO. I'd be furious.

Write that letter girl!

Blondeinlondon Thu 21-Jul-05 16:29:32

Yes complain
That is completely ridiculous - these people shouldn't be allowed to call themselves nurses

lilaclotus Thu 21-Jul-05 16:30:21

that's awful. complain.

Nemo1977 Thu 21-Jul-05 16:32:15

I would complain thst is stupid and i would have thought illegal especially in a care environment. So is it a case of if someone has a heartattack they stand and watch saying sorry love cant help cos im not the registered first aider???????

renaldo Thu 21-Jul-05 16:59:05

Bloody nurses - converseley doctors are not allowed not to give first aid

Catsmother Thu 21-Jul-05 17:04:41

That's ridiculous .... and I know it's not the same category but the doctors inside BMA HQ deidn't hesitate to help on July 7th did they ?

Probably thought it wasn't life threatening and couldn't be bothered to "find" their (unused and pristine) 1st Aid Box.

Bugsy2 Thu 21-Jul-05 17:05:08

Its a nightmare for healthcare workers though. My sister is a GP and she gets very stressed if someone falls ill in a public place or she sees an accident. on the one hand she feels she should stop and help out but on the other hand, she shits herself because if anything went disastrously wrong then because she is a professional, she could be held responsible.
The clinic wouldn't even have been able to give you stuff for you to do yourself, in case of an allergic reaction.
I agree it is absolutely ridiculous but that is what happens in a litigious society. If you want to be able to sue if something goes wrong, then those who may be sued don't want to take any risks.

stacijc Thu 21-Jul-05 17:10:32

healthcare workers are LEGALLY BOUND to help in situations like that. whilst they won't issue a plaster in case of allergies (as someone has already said) they have to administer basic first aid. or at least give u a first aid kit to use. i would write that letter. in fact i would have written and posted it by now lmao!!!

morningpaper Thu 21-Jul-05 17:14:02

Actually if they are just trained under Healthcare at work then they are not allowed to do any first aid for incidents that occur OUTSIDE the building, IME.

Jimjams Thu 21-Jul-05 17:51:24

I think the RCN (Royal College of Nurses) tells off duty nurses that if they help out they SHOULD NOT let anyone know they are a nurse (in case they get sued). Different if they are on duty I would have thought. Will ask my mother in a mo (she is a district nurse).

Jimjams Thu 21-Jul-05 17:54:21

OK asked her- she said no they're told not to help in case they get sued, although she said it was silly as it was just cuts and bruises. She also said that she helped out when n elderly man collapsed outside their clinic (unfortunately he later died) but she was told she shouldn't have really.

CarolinaMoon Thu 21-Jul-05 17:57:48

That's really shocking. What could go wrong? It's not a life and death situation, just a nasty graze that needs cleaning - surely it's riskier not to clean it up promptly because it would be more likely to get infected?

I would definitely complain.

Like Caligula said on the Panorama thread, they seem to be too busy being professional to actually help people out.

Moomin Thu 21-Jul-05 18:01:37

I wouldn't bother complaining to the authority as they obviously have this stupid legislation in place and will use this to defend themselves but I would get in touch with my local paper - they seem to like stories like this, that publicise how stupid beaurocracy(sp)is getting (cue photo taken outside medical centre of your dd with grazed knee looking unhappy and you behind her looking concerned/angry).

SoupDragon Thu 21-Jul-05 18:05:03

What if they had cleaned it up and it had still got infected though? Some people may then have sued them for not doing it properly.

assumedname Thu 21-Jul-05 18:07:23

Well, speaking personally, I wouldn't sue. But, obviously, they don't know that.

SoupDragon Thu 21-Jul-05 18:11:49

That's the problem. There are some sad people out there whose first instinct is "what can I get out of this?"

eg - did your DD trip on a badly maintained piece of pavement? Sue the council!

morningpaper Thu 21-Jul-05 18:32:02

Hehe last week I was in the Doctors and asked for a glass of water (am 7 months pregnant) and was told that they couldn't give me one because it was their 'policy' ... in case I need a general anasthetic.

?!?!?!

I thought that was a new low.

marbeth Thu 21-Jul-05 18:58:44

Hi assumed name

I am a nurse and nurses have a professional duty as set out in the code of conduct, in an emergancy in or outside the ward setting you have a professional duty to provide care.Many nurses are unaware of this change implemented in 2002.Previously if off duty they did not have to deal with emergancies.Also in the code they have to protect and support health in the community.Therefore they should have helped.

Caligula Thu 21-Jul-05 18:59:52

Well actually, even if you did sue, you wouldn't win. A judge would laugh it out of court.

I'd tell the local newspaper.

Jimjams Thu 21-Jul-05 19:33:27

really marbeth? I'll telll my mum as it was only about 6 months ago that she helped out ehen the guy collapsed (along with her partner). Management told them off (but she does tend to ignore them anyway).

Wasn't there a case where an off duty medical person (can't remember what) was successfully sued for removing a motorcyclists helmet at the scene of an accident?

Anonyalphamom Thu 21-Jul-05 19:40:23

Am not suprised by this as our vets surgery is next door to a doctors surgery. Last year a client got badly bitten in the consulting room, we escorted them next door (it was their gp) and were told to go away as they didnt have an appointement, so we brought them back and did first aid ourselves. Last week our receptionist got bitten, she made an appointement, went next door and was told to go back in 6 hrs to have it dressed as that was when the particular nurse that did dressings came in and that there was no dressing material in the practice. No wonder A and E gets so busy-mad world!
PS she didnt go back-we did that too!

lovecloud Thu 21-Jul-05 19:48:43

I agree with Cal - go to the papers!

That is disgusting!

How could anyone not help a child???

I remember getting of a bus and I saw an elderly indian man on the ground at the bus stop, you could see he was struggling to get up. He had special boots on that strapped up to his knees (dont know the name). I could not beleive no-one had rushed to help him, there were about 6 people standing around watching or pretending not to see him. I immediately said very loud "Is no-one going to help this man?" Most people just turned their back and a tall youngish man held his hands up and said "I'm a chef" - ???
I was so angry, I done up the boots and helped him walk back to his house. Which was by the bus stop.
I can not understand this world today were everyone is out for themselves and thinks about the impact of helping someone. The chance of being sued for helping someone must be so small. I cant beleive they would not help your daughter, they could have asked you about allergies etc before they treated her.
Makes me so angry!!!
Maybe all us mumsnetters should protest outside the surgery

Caligula Thu 21-Jul-05 19:51:34

I don't know JJ - there have been cases where the insurance company has paid out in order to go to court, but I have never actually read about a case where under English law, a plaintiff claimed damages in court for being helped. Maybe there are some, but I really doubt it. A lot of the fear of being sued is based on insurance claims, not legal claims. And if the insurance companies went to court, they would probably win - but they won't risk it. Hence the climate of fear of litigation, based on no legal precedent at all, as far as I'm aware.

SoupDragon Thu 21-Jul-05 19:55:24

I remember a story of a doctor who was successfully sued (or settled out of court) when they broke someone's ribs (?) giving emergency, life saving, CPR.

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