the well being of the 16 year old girl with appendicitis who was currently without medication. They did not seem to understand. Apparently it was not their fault. I suggested a number of things including offering her oral medication. That eventually happened. But I also asked if there were such a thing as mediation available in cases where patients and staff were not seeing eye to eye. They had no idea what I was talking about. I suggested they might have a counsellor available who could help. Their response was to ask if I was asking for Helen to see a counsellor. "No. I want someone who is sympathetic to try to mediate." The only thing that happened as a direct result of that was a referral to CAMHS. So I asked if there were anybody that helps when there are serious difficulties with patients. I don't remember what the emergency action service was called but they did suggest something and I agreed that they might contact them. They were not available, a message was left, and twenty four hours later a reply came back stating that they didn't deal with children under 18!
Nurse attempts to cover her tracks with false allegations
Sandy Shore then, maybe covering her behind, reported us to the Children Services. They turned up and interrogated us for 3 hours making the situation worse not better. There is currently a serious complaint in progress against them. Sandy Shore (and possibly other nurses but that seems to be a suggestion not a fact by the Children Services) made dark and insidious implications and allusions like "He laid on her bed with her." (not true), "There was inappropriate touching." (not true), "She undressed in front of him." (not true), "She refused treatment." (not true), "She said she wished she were pregnant." (She was asked), "She said she was into witchcraft." (What has that got to do with anything?). It is clear what Sandy Shore's anxieties are!
Help finally arrives
Eventually I requested that we see the surgeon in charge. Mr Vinod K Raghunathan arrived and Helen asked him some pertinent questions about intravenous versus oral medication and the benefits (or not) of paracetamol. He was perceptive, respectful, sympathetic and to the point. He made it clear that he could not tell the staff nurses where Helen should be but he recommended the children's ward and, failing that, a single room if possible. He prescribed that Helen's father should be with her if she wanted because it was part of her therapeutic care. He explained the benefits of intravenous antibiotics even though oral would still do the job. Helen decided to go back on intravenous antibiotics (in spite of her dread) because it was a more reliable way of recovering faster. Incidentally the next cannula fitted was far less painful.
The conclusion to the appendicitis was that Helen was discharged with the infection cleared and an appointment in six weeks to check it.
The scale of the terror
Helen was at one point on the verge of walking out of the hospital because her experience was so bad she said she would rather die at home than stay in that hospital. I know my daughter and I know she meant it. That is how dreadful the atmosphere was.
Continued negative effects
When she went six weeks later the surgeon advised that they should take her appendix out. Helen went pale. He pointed out that it was not necessary and it was up to her. Of course she could not put her life in the hands of those people after the experience she had endured. She has not had her appendix removed. Now she suffers regularly from what might be psychosomatic pains in her abdomen. Incidentally Helen did attend the Park Hospital in Nottingham about her scoliosis and after one visit there she wanted to know if they could take her appendix out. They were respectful and kind. It really is as simple as that.
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