Thursday, 31 March 2016

Life Fourways Fail

I am not sure if this is a fail of Life Healthcare’s Life Fourways Hospital or a fail of Ampath Pathology Laboratory but I feel that this is a big fail on both their sides so much so that I never want to use Life Fourways or Ampath ever again.

About 1am this morning I was woken by Lynda who was in pain that women tend to get, half an hour later after pain killers weren’t working we decided to go to the emergency room (ER) of the closest hospital which was Life Fourways.

After getting through the admin side at reception Lynda got to see the doctor in the emergency room which was a few minutes past 2am. After doing the few usual tests, prods and pokes, they drew three vials of blood and sent it off to be tested, then they put her on a drip. And now comes the fail.

One hour just waiting we asked the nurse why can’t they give us a script and send us on our way, they responded that they waiting for the blood results to return so that they would know what was wrong. The waiting turned to two hours with other patients starting to complain. After some investigation of why it was taking so long, it turns out that Life Healthcare management had instructed the ER to send all blood for testing at Ampath which was about two kilometres away instead to sending it to Lancet Laboratories which has laboratories in the hospital building itself. This begs the question why? Is Lancet too expensive? Surely it can’t be slower that Ampath? Is their some kick-back deal between Life Healthcare and Ampath? According to the ER staff, they have been having time issues with Ampath for some time now.

Finally the results came back three hours later. I asked the doctor on duty about our extremely long wait for Lynda’s tests results and he answered that her tests would normally would take 30mins but now on average it has been one and a half hours. Why three hours, maybe it is time to start blaming IT and the network or maybe the traffic in the early hours of the morning.

We finally walked out of the ER at Life Fourways Hospital at 5:30 in the morning, their pharmacy was as expected closed and the closest one open was at their competitors hospital Netcare Olivedale Hospital, so off we went to buy the prescribed medication before arriving back at home just after 6am.

A quick wash, coffee, and it is off to work I go.

With all the warning signs around me this morning in a very quiet hospital, let this be a warning to you, don’t go to Life Fourways emergency room unless you have no other choice. Life Healthcare management have some ulterior motive to make sure their ER doesn’t work efficiently. In the end you have to go to Netcare Olivedale Hospital just to get to an open pharmacy.

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