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"Hospital sends suicidal patient home sicker than they came in"

About: St Vincent's Hospital

(as the patient),

Entering the hospital after a suicide attempt I was made an involuntary private patient at St Vincent’s hospital in the PECC unit. I have the following complaints which extend to a public concern for others entering this facility.

1. I was not seen when made a voluntary patient for 24 hours, violating the patient charter

2. I never received baseline physical observations at all violating the patient charter of being seen by a doctor within 48 hours of admission into the PECC facility

3. When in the PECC unit l I developed an infection and was not treated for 9 hours after presentation of symptoms and 4 hours after finding a positive result. Treatment only occurred after myself, and my family complained

4. The discharge summary contained grossly inaccurate statements and contained confidential information said to a visitor. The discharge statement was not sent to my Physiatrist nor my GP.

5. Upon complaining of this medical care, the response received over two months later, violating the complaint response time and contained inadequate / inaccurate information.

6. Despite several follow-up emails, the staff did not display any empathy and displayed a condescending tone. Requests to see factual information and to have my discharge summary retracted were ignored.

This poor care led me to leave the hospital sicker than I came in, after a suicide attempt. As a direct quote back from the Psychiatrist responding to the complaint as ‘patients are seen upon priority’. Despite another treating Psychiatrist saying a suicide attempt should be treated as a heart attack. I left the hospital with various medical conditions. As a direct quote in my discharge interview ‘I need to head to my GP to get better’.

I worry for the other in-patients who were also not seen within the required periods, including a patient beside me who had a very pervasive chest infection.

As a recovering patient this poor system has led to many difficulties in my follow-up treatment with physicians. My following physicians not being able to obtain my discharge summary, then the inaccuracies herein led to poor medication decisions and a worsening psychological condition.

I find that with so many sections of the charter being broken that this hospital is not equipped to handle psychiatric patients in the PECC unit.

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