This is Care Opinion [siteRegion]. Did you want Care Opinion [usersRegionBasedOnIP]?

"Lack of proper treatment and diagnosis"

About: Bunbury Hospital / Emergency Department

(as a parent/guardian),

I presented to the Emergency Department (ED) on a few weeks ago with my infant disabled child who was floppy, irritable, their fluid intake had dropped, very sleepy and they had a very heavy urine output. 

My child is known to the paediatric (paeds) ward and has a letter stating they must be seen by the paeds ward. I felt the emergency doctor wasn’t taking us seriously at all, didn’t believe our child was floppy and blamed it on their syndrome that it’s common with them (my child could sit up unassisted prior and hold their head up fine but during this, they couldn’t at all), I believe the doctor didn’t take any notice of my child's urine output and called the paediatrician on call and told them my child was just irritable, nothing else. 

We then were told to stop their seizure medication and see our paeds on during the week.

That day my child was happy, floppy but their feeding had increased again so we didn’t think much of it when we saw our paeds, they still had an increased urine output. 

Come the end of the week my child was extremely floppy again, fluids had dropped again and they were urinating an absurd amount, also still very irritable. I called the paediatric ward prior to coming in as I didn’t want to be fobbed off again in emergency. I believe they called our paediatrician who spoke to the one on-call and explained my child's history, 2 registrars came down to see my child. In my opinion, they didn’t take any notice of their urine output but did agree my child was very floppy but I believe they both wanted to just send us home, thankfully the paediatrician said no and to just keep my child overnight.

The next morning I felt we were treated like we were crazy but a blood test was done finally, our child had severe DKA (Diabetic ketoacidosis). I believe they wouldn’t have made it another 2-3 days they were flown to Perth that day. 

It was very sad that all of the doctors we saw, I felt not one of them could pick up the most obvious diabetes/dka signs, I believe there needs to be more diabetes training at Bunbury Hospital and that the first emergency doctor who I felt didn’t even relay the correct information needs to be spoken to, another child with my child's history presenting floppy should never have been sent home to begin with and I believe the DKA would have been picked up that day before it reached severe if they had done their job.


Response from Glen Matters, Operations Manager Bunbury Hospital, WACHS South West 12 months ago
We are preparing to make a change
Glen Matters
Operations Manager Bunbury Hospital,
WACHS South West
Submitted on 09/06/2020 at 14:10
Published on Care Opinion at 14:55

picture of Glen Matters

Dear whisperhn55,

I am very sorry to hear what has happened for you and your young child when you have attended Bunbury Hospital Emergency Department (ED) over recent weeks.

Having a sick child is worry enough, but it was made all the worse by our team not listening to your concerns and investigating all the symptoms. I sincerely apologise that we did not provide you and your child with the same valuable support that you are receiving from your paediatrician.

Your story is another example where a mother’s intuition to notice changes in their child is a powerful piece of evidence that can inform the treating team to diagnose the best treatment.

I greatly appreciate that you have made contact with the hospital and I assure you that a full investigation of your child's medical assessments and treatment is currently in progress. This will involve speaking directly with the staff who provided care to your child and understanding what happened.

To ensure that other families do not go through this same experience, we are improving the way information is shared between staff and consulting with our Diabetes educators to improve training and resources for the ED team. We also will learn from your paediatrician about improving our wrap-around care for families that have a child needing ongoing hospital treatment.

I hope that your child is getting better each day and we send you strength and best wishes for a speedy recovery.

Yours sincerely,

Glen Matters

Operations Manager Bunbury Hospital

  • {{helpful}} {{helpful == 1 ? "person thinks" : "people think"}} this response is helpful
Response from Vicki Charters, Director of Nursing & Midwifery – Bunbury Hospital, WACHS - South West 11 months ago
We have made a change
Vicki Charters
Director of Nursing & Midwifery – Bunbury Hospital,
WACHS - South West
Submitted on 10/07/2020 at 14:40
Published on Care Opinion at 15:20

Dear whisperhn55,

As a health service, we endeavour to provide a high standard of care for each of our patients and I am sorry for any distress this experience has caused you.

I wanted to provide you with an update on the changes we said we would put in place at Bunbury Hospital.

Staff from our Emergency and Paediatrics departments have worked with the Diabetic Educator Team at Perth Children’s Hospital (PCH) to provide training and resources for diabetes to our staff in emergency department and paediatrics here in Bunbury. This was done via video conference with the Diabetic Educators from PCH. I understand the treating paediatrician has remained in close contact with yourself to ensure your child continues to receive the care they require.

I wish you and your family all the best and I hope your child is recovering well

Yours sincerely,

Vicki Charters

Director of Nursing and Midwifery

  • {{helpful}} {{helpful == 1 ? "person thinks" : "people think"}} this response is helpful

Updates, changes and questions related to this story

Next Response j
Previous Response k

Keyboard Shortcuts

Shortcut Help ?
Go to Home g + h
Go to Tell Your Story g + t
Go to About Us g + a
Focus Search Box /