AMBULANCE RAMPING: 'Don't blame Ipswich staff', readers say
AMBULANCE ramping has again ignited passion in the Ipswich community after a Springfield Lakes mum shared her story about waiting in the busy emergency department for five hours.
The story received a mixed reception with some readers jumping to the defend hospital staff, while others shared their own experiences of disappointment after waiting hours for treatment.
Courtney Fisher presented to the Ipswich Hospital ED earlier this month with severe chest pain.
After waiting hours lying on a stretcher, the mum of two decided to leave before receiving treatment.
Ms Fisher didn't share her story to criticise the staff at the hospital, but to highlight an issue that has plagued the health facility, and others across Queensland, in recent years - ramping.
Ramping happens when paramedics arrive at the emergency department to drop off patients but there are no beds available.
The paramedics must wait until their patient is admitted to the hospital before leaving which means ambulances start to stack up outside the emergency department.
The issue has been raised by Ipswich paramedics numerous times in the past year who fear someone in need of medical attention may die while waiting for help to arrive, because the ambulances - and paramedics - are stuck at the hospital waiting.
Here's what you said on Facebook, in response to Ms Fisher's story;
Annette Rawlings "My daughter was rushed to hospital from work at the end of August with severe stomach pain and blacking out - they had her in the fast track area almost as soon as she arrived and by the time we got to her they had taken tests. She was kept in overnight in the short term stay ward and released the next morning after further test. I couldn't speak more highly of the staff. Yes the waiting area was crowded. Yes there were ambulances parked outside. But the staff can only do so much with the resources they have. They need more staff and the majority of people turning up to ED need to go to their GP instead for their minor ailments - leaving the ED for emergencies only."
Kate Tessier "Paramedics thought my illness was serious enough for hospital admission, waited all night, left amd went to GP who admitted to St Andrews. Not the staffs fault, they do their very best, but Ipswich residents need another option! I'll be bypassing Ipswich and going to the Wesley in future."
Mark Heuston "If only people would stop rocking up there with emergencies such as 'my daughters nose piercing won't stop bleeding'."
Tyler Enaj "Three days after my C section I was having problems and I went straight in. I was seen asap. Sick of them getting a bad name."
Kate Wilson "They do the best they can. The staff there work their butts off with very little thanks! They are understaffed and underfunded! If someone was waiting then there was a sicker person being tended to!"
Courtney Murrin "My father went in an ambulance to the hospital with chest pain yesterday at 3.30pm and was finally seen and admitted at 8.30pm. So yeah, it happens."
Blair Morgan "It's always a matter of priority, so don't be upset if people that require medical attention more urgently than you get seen first. It's common sense."
Katie Teske "A big part of the problem is that people use the ED because they don't 'have time' to take off work or don't want to pay etc to see their GP during the day. The amount of people sitting in there waiting to be seen for things that could just as easily be dealt with by their GP the next day is crazy. All of them take the time away from people who actually need the emergency care provided by an Emergency Department."
Elaine Schofield "I had a stroke almost four years ago and the paramedics took me to the Royal in Brisbane. There words were I'd have a better chance of recovery at another hospital."
Abi MacRae "I understand when you or your family are sick/injured, that it is a very stressful and worrying time, but someone of you need to step outside your bubble and get a reality check! Coughs, cold, fevers (yes even in babies!) can all be dealt with by your GP. Broken bones, cuts that need stitches, muscles seizing, headaches, can ALL be dealt with by your GP! Emergency department by definition is there for life-threatening illnesses or accidents. And even then sometimes you have to wait... Purely because there are ANOTHER 10 life-threatening emergencies going on behind closed doors that you are completely oblivious to! Nurses are running ragged, most, haven't had a break in their eight and a half hour shift to have a glass of water or use the loo. While we're on nurses, they are human. Did they put the wrong sticker on something? Or forgot to write in a tidbit on your chart? Thank GOD that's their only mistakes! The way they are pushed beyond human limits are ridiculous. Yet they come in day after day, exhausted and underpaid, to help you and your loved ones. And all they hear are people whining about wait time... Last thing, I promise, bad stuff unfortunately happens every day. People pass away, things get missed. It is human nature. How dare you all sit there and complain about the very people who have dedicated their lives to helping people... Perhaps you should quit your cosy job (with lunchbreaks and ability to drink and pee at whim) and see if you can do better!"