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"Rushed care"

About: Maroondah Hospital / Emergency Department

(as the patient),

I broke my hand and went to ER. I was put on fast track but wasn’t seen for about 7 hours! I recall the ER was in such bad shape, breaking chairs with sick/injured people on them and people in pain on the floor from lack of room. After being seen I was sent home with no painkillers.

I was then booked in to see a surgeon a few days later, the staff member I saw gave me so much anxiety as they said I needed surgery but wouldn’t tell me what kind and seemingly made me sign a consent form without explaining what I would get done, and saying I’d be deformed if I didn’t. On top of that they then told me I wouldn’t be seen for surgery until much later (4 weeks later- I believe this is enough time for a bone to significantly reform). It wasn’t until I saw the physio after and I told them and they seemed concerned as to why I had been booked in so late and informed me that broken bones that require surgery need to be attended to within first 7 days of break and left the room to have words with the surgeon and came back and rebooked the date (which was a bit more comforting).

When I went into hospital for surgery, I had still not been told what surgery (turned out to be a kwire) I was going to receive until around 10mins before the procedure which was unsettling. The anaesthetist caused me significant pain trying to insert drip, and was trying for about 5 mins (was left with bruising on hand and elbow crease and pain for a few days).

When I woke from surgery I had a cast on and was given betadine but was not told what to do with it, the surgeon did not come back to give me information on how things went, the nurses just gave me a sandwich and sent me home with no information on what had happened and I was told I’d be contacted for a one week review within 48 hours.

I wasn’t contacted for a few days until late the night before informing me my review would be the next day. When I saw the surgeon, I felt I could tell they were overworked and too busy and basically didn’t make much eye contact as they seemed too busy working on other cases. I recall they just told me it all looked good and that I needed to clean it. But I was not told how often or shown how (because I felt faint and had to look away while they changed my dressing).

The next day it dawned on me that I didn’t know how often to clean or change the dressing. So I tried to ring hospital only to get answering machines, unsure workers & to be dismissed by a rude nurse who’s first response to me was how did I get this number, when all I did was be transferred to their line. The nurse then told me that I needed to change it everyday, and that I should go to my gp to get it changed. So I went to my gp who told me it looked like my dressing didn’t need to be changed everyday based on the type of dressing used.

Basically I still didn’t know what was the right thing to do to care for my Kwires. I don’t understand why patients aren’t given a leaflet on aftercare once they have surgery. I’ve been experiencing extreme anxiety because of the way I’ve been treated and the fact that I’m in doubt about how to care for myself post surgery. I cried everyday since from the anxiety. I feel like the staff made me feel stupid or like I’m annoying them for trying to get information and asking questions.

I was so nervous that I would get an infection of the pin sight if I didn’t care for it properly. I had to resort to googling and reading medical papers to understand what had been done and I was still confused as I’m not a medical professional and feel I shouldn’t have to be made to try and find out my own information when it should have been done by the medical professionals themselves, in my opinion.

I understand that our healthcare system is overwhelmed but as I understand it, surgeons get paid a lot of money and nurses are supposed to help the patient feel comfortable with aftercare. I wish that medics would understand that just because they are desensitised to medical issues people have, doesn’t mean patients are. I found it’s very scary and unsettling to have to have surgery let alone the psychological effects of healing and taking appropriate care for yourself after a surgery.

I felt just like I couldn’t trust anyone.

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Response from David Plunkett, Chief Executive, Eastern Health 13 months ago
David Plunkett
Chief Executive,
Eastern Health
Submitted on 23/04/2022 at 3:24 PM
Published on Care Opinion on 26/04/2022 at 8:31 AM

picture of David Plunkett

Dear fornaxsd47

Thank you very much for taking the time to share your experience across multiple episodes when attending Eastern Health's Maroondah Hospital.

Based on your comments, there appears to have been multiple issues and concerns with your experience and care. I'm very sorry this was the case.

Whist you have provided considerable detail, I would like to invite you to contact one of our 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.

I hope we hear from you soon.

Thank you fornaxsd47 and take care.

Kind regards


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