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"ED Presentation"

About: Busselton Health Campus / Emergency Department

(as a service user),

I presented to ED with my child who, in my opinion, met criteria for Covid testing on the day of lockdown in Perth. I was triaged by a staff member who appeared to have a bad cold but said, don’t worry it’s not Covid. Their manager I believe, was also there and was friendly and very helpful.

I explained that my partner is newly diagnosed with Cancer and was due to have surgery the following week so asked if it was possible to have the test fast tracked. The manager indicated that it was possible and I thought asked the clinician to complete the paperwork.

We were asked reasonably to wait in our car. Some time later we were phoned twice for more details (ie asked for the same details twice). At that time my child needed to use the toilet and we were told if we lived close by to go home and use the toilet as we still had a wait ahead of us. Later, I did see an individual who had presented for a test in front of us had to relieve themselves in the bushes.

We then waited another 2 hours (2 1/2 hours in total) I returned a call to the number who had called me only to be connected to reception who refused to put me through to the ED because I was not a Dr and not with a patient inside the ED. I called the Covid Number on the sign and could not get through as it was busy.

It was now nearly 4 hours since we presented and we have not had any contact and have no idea if/when we might be seen. We have chosen to leave and quarantine my child at home as we think we’ve probably been forgotten.

Besides the manager, all the staff we dealt with were, I felt, very abrupt. The clinician said that it was quite a process to complete the paperwork to fast track results and I felt their manner indicated to me that they really weren’t interested.

I have no issue with waiting for testing when the ED is busy, which it obviously was. But feel there was a complete lack of communication  and compassion. This presentation has added unnecessary stress to a very difficult time for our family. I hope that you can use this feedback to make some positive changes as I feel it wouldn’t take much to make this a better experience.


Response from Jodie Omodei, Operations Manager, Coastal, WACHS South West last week
We have made a change
Jodie Omodei
Operations Manager, Coastal,
WACHS South West
Submitted on 05/05/2021 at 12:29
Published on Care Opinion at 12:39

Dear Could be better,

Thank you for your feedback. I am very sorry for the experience you and your child had at Busselton Health Campus. This is certainly not the level of care we strive for and it appears that we have added to an already stressful time for you all.

The Emergency Department, Clinical Nurse Manager has addressed your concerns with the staff that were working on the day. The discussion with staff in the Emergency Department has been focused on improving communication and being thoughtful in conversations with patients and families who may be very worried.

I can only imagine how frustrating it would have been when you were unable to talk to anyone at the campus whilst waiting out in your vehicle. To rectify this we have ensured that the switchboard will transfer calls to the After Hours Manager, if the Emergency Department is extremely busy.

I also want to let you know about a process called “ Care Call.” Care Call is a process whereby, a patient, loved one or friend, who is worried about the care or care processes, locally, speaks to a senior staff member and also via 1800 744 059. It appears that you were not provided with Care Call information and as such, we will also instigate actions to ensure Care Call information is made more accessible.

Thank you again for sharing your experience. Your feedback has enabled us to make these changes to our processes to ensure that this doesn’t happen again.

I wish you all the best for the future challenges that you and your family have ahead. If I can be of any assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact me on 0417 176 473.

Kind Regards

Jodie Omodei

Acting Operations Manager

Busselton Health Campus

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