This is a complaint about services at Masterton Hospital A & E, I am writing them on my blog and sending the link and a copy to the PATIENT EXPERIENCE (laugh out loud) person at the Wairarapa DHB, who always refuses to address any complaints, This is not about the A & E doctor and nurses I dealt with on Monday 1 April when I presented with my badly grazed hand full of footpath grit I couldn’t get out myself, they were kind and professional.
This is about what happened on Wednesday 3 April when I went back to have the x-rays the doctor at A & E ordered only to discover the request had been removed and I was severely traumatised by the series of events that followed. What should have taken 20mins to get an x-ray took 2 hours due to the negligence and unprofessional behaviour of unknown medical staff who cancelled the X-ray.
As part of the impairments I must deal with regarding my Complex PTSD, when stressed my flight and freeze response is set to extreme, so it is very difficult when that feeling you don’t want to be somewhere comes on, because your homing beacon goes off and the feeling to run away is overwhelming. I missed out fight response because I can usually deal with that now, but I do believe it makes the other two much worse.
On Monday I fell over, I hurt my hand, I tried to get the stones under my skin out, but they were lodged and the pain was excruciating, I had no Panadol or alcohol to dull it. The only way to get them out was the hospital A & E, I currently do not have a doctor and the Carterton Medical Centre is extremely hostile towards me, also I am not registered I would have to pay $75 to see a nurse – maybe more. I don’t have $75, I live terrorised and poor on invalids benefit in a rental I can’t afford.
It was a huge decision for me because the last few times I have been at A & E were extremely traumatising. There is a TV screen at A & E that constantly says not to go there if you can go to your GP, which makes me feel really really bad. It says other things that are very upsetting about suicide and violence, about how there is support when I know what they offer is worse than no support at all.
The last time I was there for myself was when the police violently assaulted me with handcuffs and caused permanent damage to my right wrist. I can’t talk any more about that as it is triggering me again. Because my injury was again my right wrist I became triggered by continuous flashbacks to my hospital visit after the last two acts of unwarranted criminal violence towards me. Both I made complaints about, both ignored, two officers even lied in court about what happened. And my visits to A & E were both traumatic because SOME staff were unprofessional, did not know how to accommodate impairments related to my disability and made the experience worse.
Even now I am starting to became distressed about what happened and I really don’t want to write this because I HATE BEING UPSET AND CRYING, but I know I have to and I know I am not going to have to write it again.
I had to wait less than an hour, the receptionist didn’t like it but allowed me to stay to have the wound on my palm dealt with. I was doing all I could to not be triggered by the flashbacks I started to have and being surrounded with government propaganda of police and threats to be removed if you become abusive. As I now have a tourettes type response with triggered it is very distressing that might happen and staff wouldn’t understand and have me removed or police called – I am terrified of most police.
I managed to not cry and not tick for most of the time I was waiting, thank God. Where once I could have easily dealt with such an event, with my disability I am unable to cope (without the health care ACC were supposed to reinstate in 2010, or the services mental health say they provide but just not to me). I was seen by Dr Smith, I had to wait 45 mins for a numbing cream to work before he started to remove the skin and grit, I was also given gas. I asked him if there was a hospital volunteer or someone who could sit with me while I waited alone in the cubicle as I was trying not to freak out and resist the urge to run away (leave the hospital), cry, rock and curl up in a ball in the corner of the room (which had happened after the first police assault and threats of worse violence when I was left alone for a long time by health staff).
They couldn’t get anybody like that so the nurse sat with me and talked for as long as she was able. I was very grateful they had listened to my request, this is what I do to manage impairments related to my disability so I am not further traumatised/harmed (my disorder is compounding) and my life extremely stressful anyway. When Dr Smith finished dressing the severe grazes he felt around my wrist and I winced when he touched the inside of my wrist. This was very painful, but had remained sore to touch since the police assaulted me in August? 2018. He suggested I have an x-ray, I told him I had one last year when I hurt it and there was nothing, he wanted me to have another anyway. I told him I had not been able to have any follow up after the wrist injuries last year because of my stress disorder and not being able to stay in A & E, as well as having no doctor, or being able to go to a doctor.
I started to cry as I wanted to have the x-ray but I had been fighting myself for the entire time I was there so I didn’t run away, now he added on some more time my psych just couldn’t cope. Dr Smith understood why I couldn’t stay, he understood I wanted the x-ray but had reached my coping limit, he suggested I come back for the x-ray when I was feeling better. I cried again because he understood and offered me an option that accommodated my impairments and would allow me to get the health services I needed. So few hospital and health staff ever do this, or even know they should. The continuous propaganda about EVERYBODY HAS CHOICES seems to make most people callous and cruel towards people who can’t do things out of extreme fear (based on past experiences), and of course serious mental health & psychosocial issues.
Dr Smith was so nice, he did a great job, hurt me as little as he could, though it did hurt. He reassured me several times that he would leave the x-ray request at the x-ray department and all I would need to do was come back to there, without having to go through A & E (which traumatises and triggers me). Can someone please make sure Dr Smith sees the x-rays as I think they gave me some other person to view them and I don’t know if that person is trustworthy.
My discharge summary says under Advice to Patient.
Jayne we have cleaned and dressed the abrasions – all the sand has been washed out.
Keep the dressing on for 5-7 days – replace as needed
You can get it wet – just dry it gently.
Your urine tested positive for infection – herewith the script
You are still tender in the wrist – I have put in for an xray – attend when suits if you don’t want to today.
Come back any concerns
I had been trying to make myself go to A & E for months about my ongoing bladder/kidney infections as I havn’t seen a doctor for years due to my disability and appalling unprofessional behaviour by Carterton Medical Centre and others. I now also can’t afford to see one as it will cost me $75 from my invalids benefit. I have had these infections getting worse for years, corresponding with my period on a monthly basis. I have to wear a pad every day and have humiliating experiences with wetting myself, especially when my bladder is infected. About five years ago, while living in Wainuiomata I tried to have the worsening incontinence addressed and was supposed to go for ‘invasive’ tests. My mental health was very bad over there due to my dangerous living situation at the time and ACC continuing to reinstate my care from 2009. The nurse I was working with organised for the tests but when I said I needed my mental health care reinstated so I had psychosocial support to attend she was very callous and cruel. She said if I didn’t want to go that was my choice, also there was nothing she could do about getting me the ACC or mental health care I was asking for, no matter how many tribunal hearings I had won (I had won two).
This current infection has lasted more than three weeks so far and I manage it with parsley tea a few times a day, I can’t drink coffee or even a small amount of alcohol or it sets it off. I had to go to the toilet to pee twice while waiting at A & E. I desperately need to see a doctor, mental health know this, the Minister of Health and several MPs know this, Kieran McAnulty knows this, Stephen Enright at Director of mental health’s office knows this, DHB mental health services know this, Carterton Medical Centre know this, police know this, court staff know this, Simon Watt from Compass Health/Bell Gully knows this, so do Masterton Medical and Whaiora (who both said they weren’t taking more clients, which I don’t believe is true, when at MMC with my sick friend recently I watched a young man come in and sign up on the spot, he wasn’t told they weren’t taking patients – which is what emails from MMC told me). I have made previous complaints to the DHB about not being able to access health care and being discriminated against, all are ignored.
I told the nurse about the infection and she did a urine test to confirm, Dr Smith gave me some antibiotics but I didn’t really want them because I knew this was an issue that required surgery, not continuous antibiotics. My bladder doesn’t empty properly due to a kink in my urethra (this is an hereditary condition), I already have a pelvic sling, put in 17 years ago. Bacteria builds up and causes infections, which move up into my right kidney and cause me pain. My right kidney doesn’t work properly from being sick when a baby, my left kidney is 1.5 times normal size to compensate – according to ultrasound tests done before my pelvic sling operation. I tried to have this health issue addressed years ago but failed due to ignorant cruel negligent health staff.
I went to have the xray on Wednesday, I don’t like going to the hospital because of what the DHB have done to me in the past (ie they had me arrested and dragged through court for wilful trespass for doing a legal protest about abusive negligent mental health staff) and because of my flashbacks to police violence I have had to go there to get treatment. I had prepared myself, I was relatively calm (although a good friend of mine is very sick at the moment and I have been having to support her, spent hours with her at A & E the Monday before my accident and every day since – she refused to stay in hospital like they wanted – she also has a stress disorder). I have also become very isolated and terrified of being around people as I am subjected to a lot of discrimination and have little money to go out due to the grinding stressful terrifying poverty I am being subjected to. I never drink much alcohol, I go out to socialise with people, I can sing and used to go to karaoke every week but I don’t do that any more after several horrible bigotry events at the venue.
I got to the x-ray department, I said Dr Smith has left an x-ray request for me. I had to get money out of my very small savings account ($55) to pay for the petrol to get there. I am too terrified and unwell to catch public transport in Wairarapa, most people in this region are horrible to people like myself, it is very sad and completely ignored by our community leaders. The woman at the desk said there wasn’t a request and I became very upset, being told there is health care and being refused it at the cliff face is the story of my life since I was hurt in a crime in 2002.
She was very nice and said she would sort it out when I told her what Dr Smith had said. The sorting out was horrendous for me, I was forced to go back into the A & E department and wait to be seen again, which took a long time, I was very unwell and traumatised, rocking, ticking, crying, almost curled up in a ball at times. The posters and TV screen were subjecting me to constant flashbacks and it was all I could do not to run out of the building. Then one of the advertisements on the DHB controlled TV THAT CANNOT BE SWITCHED OFF BY STAFF came up as Speak out about violence towards women. The same words on the banner in the Masterton police station I threw red washable poster paint on in January 2018 in response to police lying and getting away with violently assaulting me and threatening me with ‘as bad as police could be’ – eg Louise Nicholas I assumed. The same banner I am currently in court for, that I still can’t get a lawyer for and have strangely and illegally been denied legal aid.
I became distraught when I saw that on the screen, I asked the receptionist to turn it off, begged her to turn it off. She came and turned off TV that was on some TV show off, I told her it was the other one that was triggering me, she said she couldn’t turn that one off. That screen was also showing advertisements for how great mental health services were and to go to your doctor, all things I know are not true. Anybody who has read George Orwell’s book 1984 would be horrified – I was horrified, they were even advertising the private hospital as better than public hospital waiting times – ie driving privatisation by illegally causing unnecessary suffering and death.
Under the Official Information Act can I please have a copy of all the advertisements that were playing in the morning on Wednesday 3 April in the A & E department at Masterton Hospital.
Several nurses came to see me, through my distress I told them Dr Smith had requested the x-rays. Nobody would tell me why they had been cancelled, nobody would tell me who cancelled them, because I know Dr Smith wouldn’t have, he was quite adamant I was to have the xray and I would be seen at the department when I could make myself go there.
I want to know who cancelled the xray and why they would do that knowing I was going to come in, they had verified all my contact details with all their forms on the Monday, they could have phoned or text me to say not to come. They also would have had to give me an explanation why Dr Smith had changed his mind, which I bet they didn’t have. The person who cancelled the xray was a cruel ignorant spiteful person who violated my rights as a disabled person by refusing to accommodate impairments related to my disability. Impairments Dr Smith had recognised and dealt with so professionally and SOMEONE had removed which will make it even more difficult to go to A & E or the hospital. My Complex PTSD is compounding, so trauma on trauma just makes me more unwell and being denied mental health, ACC and other necessaries of life by our cruel corrupted neo-liberal controlled health system is killing me.
Note I have not taken the antibiotics and Dr Smith said I should keep the script if my bladder infection gets so bad I can’t stand it and parsley tea doesn’t work. I havn’t picked up the script for paracetamol either and don’t have any in the house, because it would be $5 through the chemist. I don’t have spare money for things like that, plus I self-harm and going through pain unnecessarily is part of my disorder. Its to do with being suicidal, knowing there is absolutely no hope for my future and wanting to die – you don’t want to care for yourself if there is no reason to live.
I would also like to note from being with my friend at A & E the Monday before and my visit, that the time until we are seen by a nurse is different to that put on the Discharge Summary. Also both of us said we were smokers and it says we don’t smoke, what’s that about? Funding perhaps? I don’t drink, I don’t do drugs, I do hardly anything I used to before I was hurt and my life is extremely stressful so sometimes I smoke. I wish I didn’t but self-harming to cope is really really horrible & smoking is less and of course social. The friends I have now have disabilities, can seldom get work and all smoke, dying slowly at least will end our lives early. Living poor in New Zealand is a living nightmare after 30 years of illegal austerity, advancing of rich and persecuting of poor to profit rich. I’m sure DHB Chair Paul Collins knows exactly what I am talking about, he has been instrumental in driving Wairarapa to No 1 in NZ for suicide, No 1 for compulsory treatment orders and psychotropic drug prescriptions, No 1 in NZ and the world for self-harm and youth suicide, etc etc.