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AIBU to to really disheartened at how it seem most view the NHS

285 replies

Loubielouslonglegs · 30/10/2018 23:51

I'm a medical secretary to a breast/plastic surgery consult in the NHS. I've seen the decline of services in the last few years and absolutely disagree with it, yet understand budget.

I've been on a thread where a poster's parent could drive herself to hospital and was kicking up a stink because she wasn't 'taxied home'.

My consultant came back from clinic shocked that one of his patients started throwing chairs and hurling abuse because he wouldn't perfom surgery unless she'd seen a psychologist.

The only time I ever get any feedback is complaints - I've been offered a post in the private sector almost 2x my 23,000 nhs wage . Now finally thinking I should put myself first x

OP posts:
LizzieBennettDarcy · 01/11/2018 09:27

I've got an ongoing condition with my chest/ribs that causes severe pain, and each time I get an attack, GP makes me go into A & E to have an ECG and bloods done to rule out cardiac issues as I'm high risk apparently (diabetic and overweight). I've sat on a few occasions waiting hours (that I'm always happy to do as I'm there as a precaution rather than a need) but the amount of timewasters in that department are beyond belief. One of the Doctors I spoke to last time said around 20% of attendances there are appropriate. That's horrifying and I very much took on board that I was not one of them.

Our sense of entitlement is what is killing the NHS. I take my hat off to anyone working in it under such unrealistic demand.

OkMaybeNot · 01/11/2018 09:43

Last year, several nurses failed to recognise my mum's post-op toes were infected and gangrenous for six weeks, kept wrapping them back up in bandages, telling her they'd heal. They were black.

She died from complications 8 weeks later. She was only 54.

I dunno, I reckon our NHS could be a bit better. If trained nurses are failing to recognise toes that are about to fall off, I'd say there's something wrong.

MorbidlyObese · 01/11/2018 09:44

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MorbidlyObese · 01/11/2018 09:52

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SnuggyBuggy · 01/11/2018 09:54

I think GPs, hospital departments and A&Es don't work well together.

A common situation I see from the hospital admin perspective is:

Patient is unwell, they or family member phone hospital for advice

One of us tells them we can pass on a message but it could be a day or so before the consultant can speak to them. Check clinic and it's likely there isn't an earlier appointment for them. We then suggest a GP appointment

Patient/relative replies that they have tried to see GP but they either cant get an appointment or the GP doesn't want to know. If you are under a hospital team some GPs can't fob you off quick enough to the hospital, others want to help but are conscious of litigation risk and are reluctant to do anything without a written request from a consultant.

Often in the time it takes to get help from GP/Consultant the patient deteriorates and presents in A&E

I think if GP surgeries were funded better to help more complex patients then it would take a lot of the burden off A&E

Amaaboutthis · 01/11/2018 10:00

I’m underwhelmed by the NHS to the point where we try to avoid using it.

Seriously ill vomiting baby - he’s fine, not dehydrated. 12 hours later he was in resuscitation. To be fair his care was then outstanding but only because our private paediatrician had him admitted to his NHS practice and over saw his care

Husband diagnosed with cancer. His MDT meeting was in Costa in the hospital full hearing of all customers including us. Consultant then shrugs his shoulders and says, nothing we can do. A year later, under full private care he is alive and relatively well, although not cured, but a recipient of outstanding care and treatment including off label drugs which are working

Another baby covered head to toe in excema, crying when feeding, vomiting up feeds. No issue says the NHS dr. Private paediatrician sees him the same day, takes one look at him, says “cows milk protein intolerance and infected excema” within 24 hours on non dairy milk and a mix of creams baby is 90% better

Husband slips a disc, NHS offer a physio appointment in however long. Private dr operates within 2 weeks to remove totally crushed and damaged disc. Husband never had another problem with back.

NHS needs a total overhaul. It’s not for for purpose

OllyBJolly · 01/11/2018 10:06

I honestly don't recognise these descriptions of the NHS.

I can get a GP appointment same day any day except Monday which is emergencies only. My last appointment was following pneumonia when I was referred for a chest xray same day - given a letter to go straight to hospital (this is normal practice here,) Wait at hospital was about 20 minutes. A relative staying with me who became ill was also seen and treated same day despite being from different NHS area.

I've had extensive exposure over past five years caring for my sister who died earlier this year with brain tumours. Apart from a couple of issues with MRI scan appointments, the treatment was exemplary: from consultants, GPs, junior doctors, nurses, physios, radiologists, everyone.. I can only think of one bad tempered nurse (who complained we were taking up a bed when there was nothing could be done Shock) but in the many, many HCPs we seen that's not bad going.

DSis became ill on Christmas day while with me and I called 101 who got an emergency doctor out within an hour. He called an ambulance who took us to the local hospital. She was diagnosed with sepsis and so well looked after - really the care and attention we all got was just so comforting. Once she stabilised, although obviously had very limited time left, we were given three options; they could keep her in hospital, she could move to a local hospice, or they could transport her back to her home NHS area (closer to her family). Her DCs' choice was to have her closer and she was transferred by ambulance 150 miles away.

I have only praise and eternal gratitude for our NHS. Flowers

Blahblahblah111 · 01/11/2018 10:07

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Otherpeoplesteens · 01/11/2018 10:10

I've worked extensively in the NHS and do not believe in it. You name it, I've seen it:

  • the General Manager (band 9, so on £84k-102k) who couldn't attend meetings between 3pm and 4pm because "that's when she walks her dog" according to her secretary;
  • the Lead Nurse (supernumerary, so 37.5 hours a week, not on shifts) for a particular service who got up and walked out of her own service's retendering meeting at 2.34pm on a Thursday having watched the clock since it started at 2pm because "I've done my contracted hours for the week"
  • the numerous staff who go off sick when you ask them to do some work
  • nearly 100 mobile phones paid for by the NHS not returned when the user left the Trust, with bills racked up in some cases for years after they've left
  • 250 brand new iPads sitting in a cupboard unused, purchased to use up residual budget at the end of the year so that it wouldn't be taken off the department's future budget;
  • 2,000 (yes, two thousand) brand new 4-G enabled Lenovo Thinkpads sitting in a cupboard because the district nurses etc didn't want the extra bother of having to see more patients because of the efficiency which would be unlocked by their using them;
  • the same district nurses with a rota to plan their long-term sick leave
  • the IT system which meant senior management couldn't use a computer in one of the Trust's two main office sites where they were expected to work, five years after a merger caused the split site working. Sorting out the system (or, indeed, closing one of the sites) was practically quite easy, but "too politically difficult".

To say that these people treat patients with utter contempt doesn't begin to describe it.
Otherpeoplesteens · 01/11/2018 10:14

As for my own experiences as a patient/carer, the birth of my first child in 2017 has forced me complain at just about every point of contact we had with maternity services and, finally, to commence legal proceedings against the NHS under Human Rights law.

TheDodgyDunnyOfDoom · 01/11/2018 10:20

The NHS is crap at some of what it does. I had to wait 63 weeks to see the surgeon I needed to due to cock ups. I am still suffering as a result of that delay. My pissed up millionaire neighbour fell down stairs and had immediate bone plates and wires put into his bones. I effectively needed the same thing but have had to wait almost two years. I lost my job as a result.
My DH would be dead now if we had listened to the MDT and not sought a second opinion. An awful lot of people would have listened though and it terrifies me how many people put their lives in the hands of these jokers and end up dead!
Our neighbour is alive twelve years on from the MDT wanting to switch him off. His daughters refused to allow it and it's like they had to get him better to get the bed back! He has a stoma but manages it well. Other than that he has a full life.
Many people I speak to have similar stories. They are a law unto themselves though and if you complain it's a closed shop. They all just protect each other and their pensions.

TheDodgyDunnyOfDoom · 01/11/2018 10:32

My DMum was repeatedly fobbed off by her GP. I eventually took her to the hospital where she was admitted. She had cancer in 75% of her bone marrow when patients with this condition normally present at about 20%. DDad and I were spoke to like we were fucking hillbillies keeping Mum from medical treatment and I went mental telling the vile doctor in charge of her case that she had been sent home with pain killers on SEVEN occasions by her gormless wanker GP! No wonder they get verbally abused. They verbally abuse the families sometimes!
DDad had to wait 13 hours from fracturing his hip to actually getting on a ward. This was via another totally inappropriate hospital where he was left and then had to be collected by a different ambulance to get to an actual hopsital that deals with emergencies. His surgery was cancelled three times and yet he was starved for surgery for three days. A drip had been prescribed three days prior but never given. He was so dehydrated and ill they tried postponing it a fourth time and I went nuclear and they pinned his hip that day. He had an uneventful recovery luckily.

Me and mine have had to fight tooth and nail to get every single tiny little bit of care we have paid for and it's shite from top to bottom in my view. If only some loaded person would set up an alternative that we could pay into it would take off like a rocket if the care was even mediocre!

lilythesheep · 01/11/2018 10:57

Elderly friend of mine recently discharged from hospital after a hip operation. After several days of distress and her condition
worsening (she was vomiting, had diahorrea, becoming incoherent, dressing falling off wound) it transpired that the reason her daughter was unable to get help for her was that the hospital had forgotten to put any care package in place before discharging her late on a Saturday night, and so no district nurse had been arranged to see her or knew of her existence. Fortunately she had a friend who is a nurse who has been coming round when she is off duty and helping her and managed to persuade her GP to come and do a house visit which relatives had been unable to do. A week and a half after discharge they still haven't managed to get a care package in place and still no visits from district nurse. If she didn't have a relative able to move in with her for the time being and this nurse friend to keep an eye on her medically I honestly think she would have died.

Going back a few years, but when my grandmother was in hospital with pneumonia and too weak to hold anything or cope with solid food, nurses would just plonk a tray of regular food in front of her that she clearly couldn't manage (eg a chicken drumstick), leave her, then come back later and take it away untouched. The only way she got fed when we realised what was happening was by my mother coming in every day and sitting with her to spoonfeed her soup. We witnessed her crying for water because she was so thirsty and being ignored and nurses getting stroppy with my mother when she raised this with them. When she then died, my parents raised a complaint with the hospital - got vague reassurances about lessons being learned for the future.

Another (not elderly) friend nearly died as his GP surgery wouldn't listen to what he was saying and said he was perfectly fine and didn't need an appointment or any referral. No doubt they were overstretched and short of appointments. After being fobbed off for a couple of days he went to the surgery anyway, collapsed on the floor while waiting to see if he could be seen, and turned out to need emergency surgery - staff at the hospital said another day and he wouldn't have made it.

Another friend in her 30s collapsed unexpectedly one evening when we were out and broke a rib. Staff at the hospital kept on insisting/assuming it was because she was drunk despite me and her both telling them she certainly wasn't. A few months later when it happened again it turned out she had a heart condition they should have spotted if they had run any tests rather than just x-raying the rib and sending her home.

Maternity antenatal care for me has involved a string of letters sent with the wrong appointment, the wrong phone number to change it on, central helpline for appointments not passing on changes to local hospital, impossible to get through to anyone on the phone even if you spend all day trying. Then when I turn up for appointments and see guilt trippy signs about the cost of feckless patients not showing up I wonder how often they actually tried to rearrange or never got told they had one in the first place.

And yet you are expected to be profoundly grateful it exists and get criticised for implying it isn't the best system in the world.

Blahblahblah111 · 01/11/2018 11:08

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Blahblahblah111 · 01/11/2018 11:09

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InertPotato · 01/11/2018 11:28

It's a crap system. It's just propaganda we're being fed about it being the best system in the world.

This is my sense too.

Obviously, there are some incredibly dedicated people working in the NHS, but it is so broken in a broader sense, there is so much waste, that these people are effectively lost in the system. You can't find them unless you're just lucky.

MorbidlyObese · 01/11/2018 11:34

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Otherpeoplesteens · 01/11/2018 11:46

It's a crap system. It's just propaganda we're being fed about it being the best system in the world.

It's my sense too, but many of us create the propaganda ourselves. I hate it when people say "the NHS saved my life."

No it didn't. Medicine and science saved your life. The NHS merely transfers the risk of having to pay for treatment from the individual to all taxpayers.

Honeyroar · 01/11/2018 11:58

It was my thread about my mother and the hospital that you're referring to. You've actually completely taken it out of context - I never once said I expected a taxi or ambulance home, I just said I was surprised they let her walk back up a hill without a porter or someone after having had a high heart rate and a history of ridiculously high heart rates that have resulted in hospital stays. I think that a little thought like that (and the relatively small cost of that) could prevent a bigger problem occurring (like the previous two occasions when she's had to be rushed into resuss by ambulance, which must cost a heck of a lot more..)

If you deal with patients in the manner you spoke on my thread, and misinterpreted things like you have in your first post on this thread, I'm actually not surprised you get lots of complaints! You sound in the wrong job.

As I said on the other thread, between my husband and my mother we've had three emergency ambulances and seven hospital admittances in the past year. Weve had some absolutely superb care and I've been extremely thankful and complimentary. I feel like I'm on friendly terms with half the staff on the ward my husband has been in and out of frequently, and I think they liked us too. I've seen a lot of the grief and abuse some staff get. That said, it doesn't mean stupid things don't take place in the NHS. At least two of those ambulances were needed because of lack of thought and rushed discharges, and that's a huge waste of nhs money.

Honeyroar · 01/11/2018 12:02

And by the way I wasn't "kicking us stink" I was just asking a question on an Internet forum and rolling my eyes to myself!! I haven't said a word about it to anyone at the hospital and never had any intention of complaining.

Jux · 01/11/2018 12:10

I feel privileged to have the NHS, and am horrified by repeated Government''s determination to dismantle it. i worked in a healthcare union and we campaigned hugely against the NHS and Community Care Bill as it went through its stages, but with Thatcher having such a massive majority we had no chance and failed. We warned that this would happen, the the NHS was under attack but no one could do anything to stop the juggernaut.

My parents were born in 1924 and 1917. They knew what it was like without the NHS. Mum worked in the NHS all her life.

I do want to thank you heartily for working within it, it must be soul destroying. I don't blame you for leaving, I just wish you wouldn't.

fairgame84 · 01/11/2018 12:12

I'm shocked that a medical secretary is on the same salary as a nurse. That's not right.

OlderThanAverageforMN · 01/11/2018 12:13

*I hate it when people say "the NHS saved my life."
No it didn't. Medicine and science saved your life

The NHS is a delivery organisation. It delivers medicines and procedures most of which have been developed elsewhere. It's primary responsibility is care, where it seems to be failing miserably.

InertPotato · 01/11/2018 12:37

I feel privileged to have the NHS, and am horrified by repeated Government''s determination to dismantle it.

This is what I think people are referring to as 'propaganda'. Is it actually a priviledge to receive a service you've paid for? Is my weekly rubbish collection a privilege?

On second thought, maybe it is, because it's the only government service I actually feel grateful for. These guys are bloody amazing, there come rain or shine picking up the bins, always cheerful and happy to say hello to my dog. Which is why I tip them handsomely every Christmas.

Thank god for these guys.

MorbidlyObese · 01/11/2018 12:49

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