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November 2019

Date: 23 December 2019

  • Details:

    Patient had fallen from a Scooter and injured their leg.

    The crew who attended administered pain relief (gas and air) as the patient was in severe pain. However, they failed to communicate with the young patient as to how the medication would make them feel (i.e. lightheaded/dizzy). This failure to explain, increased the anxiety the patient was already feeling resulting in the patient refusing further pain relief.

    One crew member that was looking at the patient’s leg, did not touch the patient’s leg but said to the other crew member that the patient’s leg was not broken and that there were no abnormalities, bruising or swelling.

    One of the crew then assisted the patient onto their back whilst the patient was still in pain and reiterated that the leg was not broken.  The crew then advised the patients family members to get the patient assessed at a minor injuries unit. From the advice provided by the crew, the patients father carried the patient to their car.

    At the minor injuries unit, the nurse assessed the patient’s leg. Due to the amount of pain the patient was suffering, a nurse contacted ambulance control and asked for an ambulance to take the patient to Hospital.

    The complainant reported that the same crew arrived and stood at the door saying that it was inappropriate that they have been called.

    The crew agreed to take the patient to hospital. At hospital, the X-ray confirmed that the patient has a spiral fracture of their tibia.

  • Findings:

    The comprehensive investigation included a clinical review of all the relevant patient care records, an interview and statement from both staff members.

  • Lesson learnt / action taken:

    The staff members were guided through reflective accounts and produced a research project around spiral fractures which will be disseminated to all staff for learning.

    The staff members have also reflected on how they communicate with parents and patients.

  • Date:
    01 November 2019