"Communication with next of kin during a phone call."
About: Ipswich Hospital / Emergency Department Ipswich Hospital Emergency Department Ipswich 4305
Posted by Communication with next of kin (as ),
When I called Ipswich Hospital to find someone to talk to about my mother (I am listed as next of kin) who was admitted to emergency, I was put through to an administration officer (I am mostly aware of processes because I am a registered nurse who works for another Q Health facility).
I felt this administration office in the emergency department was very rude. She said to me, aren’t you going to come in? This language and tone seemed very judgmental and unhelpful, and I can’t begin to describe my disgust and shock when she said this to me. It took me a moment to register what she said. I said politely that I wanted to talk to someone looking after my mother, a nurse or doctor. She finally said, they don’t take phone calls in that area. This led me to believe that my mother could have been in the resuscitation area and very unwell. What ward doesn’t take phone calls? These things are not what a concerned family member needs to hear.
I was put through to a nurse in the area she was in – the medical decision unit I believe. This nurse told me that she would get the doctor or another nurse to call me back regarding my mother. No one called me back at all.
As a nurse I can't begin to explain how angry this conversation with the administration officer was. In my opinion, there is no room for judgmental language when my only request was to talk to someone regarding my mother. There are multiple sources of evidence that states that judgmental tones are detrimental to building good therapeutic relationships with patients and their family members.
I hope this story and my complaint with the consumer liaison officer is heard so they can improve their behaviour and outcomes for patients.