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"Disgraceful ED Visit"

About: Narrogin Health Service / Emergency Department

(as a parent/guardian),

Recently, I sent my teenage child to the ED department at Narrogin Hospital with their partner as I had no one at home to look after my younger children.

They presented with an extremely sore throat, of which I had looked at prior to them going to ED and found they had very swollen and pus covered tonsils. My child stated to the nurse that they thought they had tonsillitis of which, in my opinion, the very rude nurse stated, and who told you that, they were triaged by this same nurse who gave them a mask of which they struggled to put on and their partner I believe was rudely ordered to help my child although, apparently, my child should know how to do it themselves. 

My child was put into a COVID isolation room and told they would be tested. As I believe most people are aware, if this was the case they would need to remain in isolation at home awaiting their results, happy for this if it is required, however, we are a household of 8 so not ideal, especially since they had no other COVID symptoms to begin with to warrant this treatment, they had not travelled outside of WA nor had he been in contact with a positive COVID case, let alone any additional symptoms other than a sore throat. In my opinion, had my child been triaged properly, this would have been seen. 

When triage had been completed and name band put on, my child checked it and advised it had the wrong name on, the nurse giggled and did not amend this, despite my child's partner handing over their Medicare card to show correct name.

Their partner was then told they had to get out so was sent to sit in the car, as they did not drive they could not do anything. My child was put in the room of which my child felt they could not question this despite texting me and advising of the current situation, the door was closed behind the nurse and as they closed the door, announced to the whole ED department, possible COVID in the room.

I am supportive of the requirement to be vigilant with the current situation, however, this needs to be consistent and respectful. I then attended the ED department with my other children and had them discharged and allowed to leave without testing. My child then returned home and we administered antibiotics which we had found at home in the medicine cupboard which did not work, so then presented to the GP surgery to be told they most definitely had tonsillitis.

Upon booking the GP appointment, I advised of the symptoms and this was not an issue to the surgery at all. Upon assessment, it was noted that my child most definitely had tonsillitis and an appropriate script was given.

The treatment of my child, in my opinion, is very disappointing and unwarranted as no one wants to be in ED, so why treat them this way.


Response from Rachele Ferrari, Regional Director, WACHS Wheatbelt 3 months ago
Rachele Ferrari
Regional Director,
WACHS Wheatbelt
Submitted on 16/10/2020 at 17:46
Published on Care Opinion at 18:03

Dear CP,

Thank you for taking the time to share your child’s experience on Care Opinion.

I would like to apologise for what happened when your child presented to the Emergency Department at Narrogin Hospital. This is an experience that no one should have in any of our services.

Our triage nurses should always take the time to explain the processes and key symptoms associated with COVID-19 assessments so that our patients and their families are kept well informed at all times.

I would like to assure you that as a result of your experience, I have asked the Operations Manager of the Southern Wheatbelt to review your story and make immediate improvements regarding how our staff are communicating with our patients and their families and carers.

I would also like the opportunity to understand more about what happened and fully investigate this to ensure that it does not happen to other people living in the community.

If you are happy to do this, I would appreciate it if you could contact me so that I can discuss your concerns in more detail. When it is convenient for you, please feel free to contact me on (08) 9621 0702 or you can email me at:

Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to reflect and make improvements in the care that we provide.

I hope your child is recovering and looking forward to speaking with you soon.

Kind regards

Rachele Ferrari

A/Regional Director - Wheatbelt

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