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"Not sure the health plan was followed."

About: Albany Health Campus

(as a carer),

I am the carer for my partner who has dementia. After recent surgery in Albany Health Campus, a plan was made with myself, the hospital social worker (who is familiar with my partner and the many health problems) & the Pioneer Health team (2 of whom are our regular GPs).  The plan was that after the surgery & after 2 or 3 days, to be transferred to the Pioneer Health team & to be transferred to the Sub-acute ward to ensure that my partner did not remove the stitches - there is a history of this. There is also a history of my partner being very prone to severe infections, some of which have been treated by the Hospital In The Home nurses over the past few years.

Two days after surgery, I was informed my partner was being discharged & I was to do a pickup ASAP. I was not told exactly what the results of the surgery were, what had been removed & what post-discharge treatment was to be conducted. My partner may have been informed but would have retained this in the memory for about 2 minutes.

During the following week, my partner removed several stitches, resulting in a gaping wound. We went to A & E where the wound was re-stitched to the best of the ability of the doctor.

On a follow-up visit to the surgeon, the stitches were all removed, including the new ones as they had not held. The surgeon organised for a Silver Chain wound care nurse to visit us at home but no-one was available for a few days. I did the best I could over the weekend to treat the open wound to prevent infection. Subsequently, wound care nurses have visited every second day but my partner removes the dressing within an hour of them leaving. We have now arranged for them not to dress the wound but to inspect to make sure there is no infection. During these inspections it has been noted that one stitch remains in the skin but has proven too difficult for the wound care nurse to remove.

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Response from WACHS GS 7 years ago
Submitted on 3/08/2016 at 5:59 PM
Published on Care Opinion on 4/08/2016 at 9:40 AM

Dear A Health Plan

Thank you very much for contacting us and telling us of your recent experiences using our services on the Albany Health Campus. We value feedback from our community as it helps us to identify areas for improvement or recognise areas of achievement. I am sorry that your partner has had ongoing issues following their surgery. This must have been distressing for both of you.

The issues you have identified around discharge planning and communication are issues that we take very seriously and are particularly important for patients suffering from cognitive impairment and their carers. I would like to ask our Regional Medical Director to review your partner’s case. Can I ask that you contact our Consumer Feedback Coordinator, Ceinwen Gearon, via email at or telephone on 9892 2284 so that we can carry out this clinical review.

I hope that your partner is well on the way to a full recovery. Please do not hesitate to contact us either as above or via Patient Opinion should you wish to add anything further.

Yours sincerely

Susan Kay

WACHS GS Regional Director

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