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Really upset about this

(115 Posts)
Serkeen Sat 17-Jun-17 15:49:43

My husband has been in hospital for 9 weeks. He had a heart valve issue.

He has now developed a nasty boil which needed treatment

Trouble is no medic wanted to take on the task.

Today when I went to visit my husband I overheard the Doctors discussing my husband and they were actually giggling/laughing that no one wanted to deal with the boil as it was on his backside, this is what they actually said, that no one wanted to take the task on, whilst they were laughing.

I am soo angry now and upset at their in professionalism

I am also angry at the fact that they are not telling us everything

He has been taken off antibiotics after 9 weeks but I over heard the doctors saying that he still had the bug in his blood!!

I am not sure whether to be angry or just cry, because after 9 weeks in hospital and that's not what I want to be hearing.

Don't know what to do now

Chewbacca Sat 17-Jun-17 15:52:10

Contact the PALs office at the hospital and speak to them asap.

Flaxseed Sat 17-Jun-17 16:10:03

That's awful! angry

Agree with Chewbacca - contact PALS. Put it in writing.

Jane10 Sat 17-Jun-17 16:12:30

How unprofessional and downright cruel. I agree with the others. Complain loud and clear. Sounds like you are his only advocate.
Good luck. Keep us informed.

BlueBelle Sat 17-Jun-17 16:30:40

Awful complain, complain PALS will do what they can and are usually very helpful
I ve only ever complained, twice I got no where either times apart from a letter defending their behaviour but PALS did their best and gave me really good advise and support
He may have been taken off anti biotics for a reason if they are not working they may need different ones or to see if he will improve without them I think sometimes the body gets too used to them and needs a jolt to get the immune system working again
Totally agree with Flaxseed put it in writing and keep a copy
Good luck, I do hope he improves soon poor chap

Nanabilly Sat 17-Jun-17 18:25:06

Did you let the doctors know you had overheard them .?
I would have marched right over to them and took their names and then said "I expect that boil to have been taken on by one of all of you by this time tomorrow or you will be reported" and I would have kept my word.
In cases like this it is " he who shouts loudest gets the best results" so don't be quiet ....make yourself heard.
Also have you asked exactly what bug it is he has in his blood. ?
Have you been quiet ,nervous,upset when the doctors have been around you ..I'm just wondering why they are not telling you everything.This normally happens if the doctors think you cannot take what they need or want to tell you.

gillybob Sat 17-Jun-17 18:44:44

That's terrible Serkeen and terribly unprofessional too . What a shame for your poor husband. Chewbacca and others are right that you should speak to PALS . We had some horrible issues when my mum was very ill. I also think that maybe you should pluck the courage up to ask to speak with someone (high up) on the ward and explain that you heard them and you feel very upset about it . Try and take someone with you if you feel nervous about it . Good luck to you and your DH too .

Norah Sat 17-Jun-17 19:17:32

Please ask someone to assist you in reporting the deplorable behaviour. I am so sorry.

paddyann Sat 17-Jun-17 19:38:49

you sure they weren't just joking among themselves? People in difficult jobs sometimes have a weird sense of humour to get them through the day.We have afriend who is a funeral director and you would be shocked at some of the stuff he jokes about..but its meant to be taken literally

paddyann Sat 17-Jun-17 19:39:12

NOT MEANT to be taken literally

janeainsworth Sat 17-Jun-17 19:46:36

I would talk to someone bit closer than PALS, either the ward sister, or your husband's consultant.
It's better that you communicate as directly as possible with those who have authority over the junior doctors.
Inexcusable behaviour.

Bellanonna Sat 17-Jun-17 19:52:27

Ive written to the Chief Executive on a couple of occasions where I've felt aggrieved. He/she has to take it up. I've also involved PALS and found them helpful. But tbh I would have intervened when I heard the conversation, Maybe it was a bit jokey but getting involved st that stage would have given them a chance to "justify" themselves. Please do something!

Serkeen Sat 17-Jun-17 20:27:17

Thank you for your help

No not nervous around Doctors, originally I asked lots of questions but then I stopped asking questions because we saw a different Doctor every day and they all had their own opinion.

For eg, we were told by one Doctor that my husband did not have Endocarditis/Heart infection. We were so happy, we both cried, because that was news given to us after 4 weeks of being in hospital. Then the very next day we were told by a different doctor that he did have it, with no tests in between.

Its been a crazy time. I just want my husband to be home now. He has been off the antibiotics for 48 hrs, and his temperatures have remained normal , which should/usually is a marker of no infection. but for some reason he still has not been discharged.

hulahoop Sat 17-Jun-17 20:53:41

Ask to speak to his consultant and ward manager .

MissAdventure Sat 17-Jun-17 21:27:38

Its totally unprofessional to be discussing anything which should be confidential in a way where others can hear. PALS are very good at sorting out this kind of thing, and it helps that they can liaise, so that you feel you have "back up"

radicalnan Sun 18-Jun-17 09:21:19

I used to work in PALS they have to get things sorted within 24 hours or it turns into a formal complaint. However, I would have taken them to task then and there because it was breach of confidentiality a part from derilection of duty, if you heard that who else was able to?

I would e mail PALS and the consultant and CEO.....

mumofmadboys Sun 18-Jun-17 09:36:09

I would make an appointment with the consultant your husband is under asap.Take a family member or friend with you.Make a list of your main grievances.Leave out small things. Ask when the boil will be dealt with. Boils of this nature often squirt
pus all over the place.Therefore maybe jokes Re who is doing it.However unacceptable in your hearing and no wonder you are upset.I am a retired Gp. Hope Dh better soon
Ps medics sense of humour can be in very poor taste.

Luckygirl Sun 18-Jun-17 09:45:19

I agree that medics' sense of humour can be an acquired taste - I am married to one! I am sure that the reluctance to lance the boil that you overheard is just a jokey exchange. A bit sick, but that is how they can be. Without some humour they would not cope with all they see and do.

But you do need to arrange to see the person in charge.

One of the biggest problems in hospitals (and indeed in health care in general) is communication. I often marvel that so many operations etc go smoothly - the right op on the right person! - but communication at that level seems to be good. It is the wider issues that get scrambled in the telling - I too have been on the receiving end of conflicting information from different staff members. And I worked in hospitals for years and getting the right information about the patient you will be seeing is sometimes a challenge.

It is entirely reasonable that you should ask to speak to the consultant. He/she is not god - they a their to help you and you OH and you need to go armed with the questions that really matter and to which you need answers.

Luckygirl Sun 18-Jun-17 09:46:07

"they are there"

grandtanteJE65 Sun 18-Jun-17 09:56:42

First, what an appallingly difficult time for you and your husband.
In your place I would follow the advice you have already been given and talk to the ward sister and the consultant involved. But, please, take a close friend or a relative with you, so you have a witness to what has been said.
No doctor or nurse should have made comments like that where they could have been heard by a patient or his relatives. It is a valid point that medical staff sometimes need to give rein to a bizarre sense of humour to get through their day, so do undertakers and priests, but professionals do so behind closed doors! You are justified in complaining about their attitude and demanding proper treatment for your husband.
"Bug" as we all know is a slang term. If what your husband is suffering from is a virus, it probably does not respond to antibiotics, which generally speaking only cure infections caused by germs, and in the case of a viral infection it makes sense to take your husband off the antibiotics which are doing no good, and may actually make him resistant to antibiotics, which will cause trouble, if he at some point needs them.
You are fully justified, too, in asking the consultant to tell you exactly what is wrong with your husband and don't hold back on asking questions if he explains things in a way you don't understand. Ask too, when you can expect your husband to be discharged from the hospital, as by no both you and he, poor man, are sick of the place!
I do hope your husband is soon well enough to come home for both your sakes.

Tessa101 Sun 18-Jun-17 10:09:27

Definitely with nanabilly on this one, in these situations you have to let them know you are aware. Find out when the Drs are doing there rounds next make sure you are there and ask the questions DONT wait to be told.

blueskies Sun 18-Jun-17 10:34:33

Sometimes we need a "gallows" humour to cope with all the issues we are dealing with. I am not making excuses but you don't know what those doctors had been experiencing prior to their conversation. They are working with death and trauma every day. We do ask a lot of young doctors especially in these dreadful times of cut backs and bed shortages. This is why so many of our medics are making applications to work in other countries. They have paid for and are in debt over their six years of study and training so this generation realistically do not owe this country anything. We should cherish our doctors and give them a bit of leeway. They are human and what will we do without them?

rocketstop Sun 18-Jun-17 10:40:17

I am wondering if your husband has a bed sore that has turned into a boil type thing. The reason I ask is he seems to have been in hospital for quite a while. These can be painful and become infected if not treated correctly.
I feel so sorry for you, I know from my own experience that when yourself or a loved one is ill or hospitalised you feel a total lack of power over your own destiny, you have mis-information on a daily basis and no matter how strong a person you are, this really wears you down. Unless you have been through it, you don't know. You will be feeling unhappy and frustrated re your husband's medical situation and his treatment. I agree with the others that you should report this, even if you feel really conflicted doing so , in that you're worried it will affect his continuing treatment. Contact PALS as others have said because you do need help with this, and even if at best, it was a 'Bit of fun' from their point of view, it was wholly unprofessional to do this where they could be overheard, and next time it could be when someone is grieving or very frightened so they do need a reprimand.
I hope you and your husband can stay strong, and best wishes to you both for a full and happy recovery.

FlorenceFlower Sun 18-Jun-17 10:56:31

My mother was very poorly, terminally ill, a couple of years ago. After a serious lack of communication on the ward, I emailed PALs late on the Friday evening to be told by reply of email that someone from PALs would look at my comments in FOUR days. So I found the name of the CEO and emailed him on the Friday night, he replied to me by 08.00 on the Saturday and when I went to visit my mother at 12.00 midday, the most senior person on duty met me and the problem was resolved.

Email the Chief Executive now, cc the Consultant, explain what's happened and I imagine you'll get a reply soon. Please take someone calm with you to any meeting, keep notes and do a timeline before you go in - i.e. when did you husband go in, dates of ops and medications, who said what and when. This will take a little time, but will give you a good basis for discussion. Emails are good - they provide an audit trail, whereas phone calls can be mislaid.

I'm a nurse, my husband a doctor ... and all this guff about 'gallows humour' is unacceptable. If you could hear the doctors talking so, I suspect, could others, and it showed a lack of honesty, dignity and sensitivity.

Hope you get your answers, I'm sure you will. 🌺

Caroline123 Sun 18-Jun-17 10:58:10

I had occasion to contact PALS and they cut through all the red tape and got me the answers I was looking for.Seriously, give them a call.They are marvellous when you feel you have nowhere to go with poor care.