Hospital staff tired enough for tears

AN EXHASUTED member of staff at Ipswich Hospital broke down in tears because she was so tired, a concerned mum claims. Clair Kelly took her two-year-old son Michael to accident and emergency when he developed breathing problems in the middle of the night.

By Jessica Nicholls

AN EXHASUTED member of staff at Ipswich Hospital broke down in tears because she was so tired, a concerned mum claims.

Clair Kelly took her two-year-old son Michael to accident and emergency when he developed breathing problems in the middle of the night.

But she said she had to wait several hours for an X-ray and when she got there the radiographer was so tired that she burst into tears.


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Although Ms Kelly from Chevalier Street, Ipswich said the care she got at the hospital was good she is concerned at the amount of hours that staff appear to have to work.

Ms Kelly, 29, a mother of three said that they had eventually got to see a radiographer at 5.45am after being at the hospital since around 1.15am.

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She said: "There was a lot of strange equipment in there and Michael did not know what it was all about.

"He was in tears and would not stay still, it took three of us to hold him down."

Ms Kelly said that Michael's behaviour had caused the radiographer to break down in tears.

She said: "The radiographer was getting stressed out because Michael would not sit down.

"She went off and burst into tears."

A nurse then came and spoke to the family and told them that the radiographer had been working long hours and that none of the nurses had had their rest breaks that night.

Ms Kelly said: "I just think it is disgusting that the radiographer was put through this in the first place.

"Staff did apologise but I told them not to worry because it is disgusting that it got to that situation."

Ms Kelly had rushed her young son into Ipswich Hospital on Friday December 27 after he woke up fighting for breath just before midnight.

Once they got to the hospital a doctor checked Michael over and could find nothing wrong but sent him for an X-ray to double check. Nothing was found and Michael is now fine.

An Ipswich Hospital spokeswoman, said that the member of staff had worked a shift before going on call at midnight.

She said: "Working in the front line of care in the NHS is often very stressful and we do our best to make sure that there are sources of help and support for all staff including support by senior colleagues throughout the day and night.

"The radiographer working in the department at this time was on call from midnight on Friday 27 December 2002 until 9am on Saturday 28th December. It was a particularly busy time at the hospital and there were many requests for radiography services. There was a senior on-call radiographer available throughout this time to support the radiographer on duty.

"We are very aware that on-call radiographers do work very hard and if it is a particularly busy time, they can work long hours, and we are finalising arrangements to put in place a new system which will mean that on-call radiographers will work fewer hours."

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