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"Undiagnosed ankle fracture"

About: Maroondah Hospital / Emergency Department

(as a relative),

My spouse was admitted via ambulance following a fall at home. They arrived around midnight and was discharged around early morning. My spouse is a poor historian and generally unwell. These falls have been occurring more frequently. Due to COVID, the ambulance driver said we could not attend the hospital. We have no details on what happened to my spouse other than their poor recollection. Here was what we have come up with.

They had a temperature of 38, tachycardia and hypertension so was giving antis, and had an X-ray of both chest and X-ray. Whilst the immediate care in the emergency department was considered and well executed my spouse was flagged as a falls risk and rightfully so. It was deemed no fracture and they were ready for discharge. I went in to get my spouse's belongings and was told to wait for them in the car which I did. My spouse then walked out unaided (usually has a wheelie frame) across what seemed to be undeveloped ground, unescorted holding a nemesis bag as they were still severely nauseated.

The next day we were phoned by the hospital to re-attend as the ankle actually was fractured. So the duty of care and patient-first of a patient who has already had a fall, documented falls risk, nauseated and walking, without their mobility aides and on a fractured ankle in their nightie across the car park is astonishing. I can provide the date of admission.


Response from David Plunkett, Chief Executive, Eastern Health 3 months ago
David Plunkett
Chief Executive,
Eastern Health
Submitted on 27/07/2021 at 08:33
Published on Care Opinion at 08:52

picture of David Plunkett

Dear talonqs99,

Thank you for taking the time to share the experience you and your spouse had when attending the Emergency Department at Eastern Health's Maroondah Hospital.

I am sorry your experience was not positive and left you feeling that Eastern Health had not fulfilled our duty of care or providing care in line with our value of Patients First.

I would like to accept your offer in providing the date of presentation/admission to the Emergency Department and ask if you could please make contact with the Patient Relations Advisors in the Eastern Health Centre for Patient Experience either by calling 1800 EASTERN or by emailing If you choose to call please be aware that it is possible that the Patient Relations Advisors may be on another call at the time you ring and if so you will be invited to leave a message so they can return your call.

Thank you again talonqs99. I trust your spouse has since received treatment for their fractured ankle and is improving.

Kind regards,


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