We are so happy with our newborn baby daughter Leah, but the whole process of being in the hospital was a horrible couple of days where the service was awful. I wasn't happy at all so I had to complain. Upon reaching home, I formed this letter which I emailed to the Malaysian Ministry of Health and to HTAA (Hospital Tengku Ampuan Afzan), the hospital in Kuantan where Fidelia gave birth:
To Whom It May Concern,
My wife gave birth to a beautiful baby girl in the early hours of Wednesday 15th June, 2011, at HTAA, Kuantan. But, I'm sad to relate, we endured one inconvenience or problem after another. It was an awful two days at the hospital as we witnessed outrageous unprofessionalism in the vast majority of staff we encountered.
I was absolutely appalled and shocked at some of the antics of nurses there.
It all started when my wife was admitted to the hospital on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning due to painful and consistent contractions. While I waited outside the screening room I was not informed by any staff about the progress of my wife. I was waiting for a good two hours, completely in the dark as to my wife's condition. Nobody made any effort whatsoever to update me on events. Eventually, after hearing screams coming from the room, and becoming increasingly worried, I went to ask a nurse what was going on. She couldn't even answer me, probably because of poor English, so the male doctor came out to tell me that my wife is going to be sent to the labour room right away!
After exiting the ambulance I walked beside my wife's bed, doing all within my power to comfort her. It turned out that the baby's head was already protruding, even while she was still in the screening room in a different building! Why did it take so long to get my wife to the labour room, and for the ambulance to arrive from just around the corner?
As we made our way to the delivery room, none of the two accompanying nurses attempted to communicate with me to describe my wife's condition. I was left to walk into walls and the nurses showed complete disregard for me when they allowed the double doors to close right in my face! It was as if I didn't even exist to them!
My wife was in labour and the baby was on it's way out by the time we reached the labour room. Of course, I attempted to go in with her and I was told by a flurry of nurses and a male doctor that I wasn't allowed to enter. I pressed them as to why but was offered no satisfactory explanation! Instead the nurses were laughing. I still don't know what was so funny. The male doctor was rather rude as well, when I heard him remark "What's his problem?" as the doors were closing. I clearly heard it and asked him what he just said, but he flatly denied saying anything. I refused to leave the labour hall and after two minutes they told me I could come in, where a few minutes later my wife gave birth to our daughter.
No sooner had the baby come out than I was once again told to leave my wife's side without any type of explanation at all. For 45 minutes I waited outside with no update or explanation by any nurse whatsoever. What sort of treatment is this? The hospital pretends to be husband-friendly, but I can tell you from my experience, it is a complete joke. I was made to feel like a stranger off the street while my dear wife had to suffer without me. I am severely upset by this, as is my wife. There is absolutely nothing husband-friendly about this pathetic hospital!
Eventually after stitching was completed on my wife, I was able to accompany her to the ward. But the problems didn't stop there.
Later on Wednesday I brought along my parents and 3-year-old daughter to visit my wife and our newborn during the scheduled visiting hours. I soon learned that there is a supposed rule that children under 12 years of age are not allowed into the wards during visiting hours. I find this absolutely terrible and fail to understand the reason behind this ridiculous rule! I'm sad to say that Malaysia is decades behind the rest of the civilized world. A female Indian security guard kept pestering us, speaking to us In Bahasa Melayu, which of course, neither me, nor my parents can speak. She was determined to pull my 3-year-old daughter away from this special moment to visit her new baby sister. She had also been missing her mother a lot and was so excited to see her. We asked the guard why my 3-year-old can't be here to visit on numerous occasions but we were never given an explanation. So we completely refused and just ignored her. Eventually she left us in peace and later even had the cheek to tell us that the 'sister' (head nurse) was angry! I will tell you that I was more angry than any 'sister' at that time! But no-one came to tell my daughter to leave, so I'm wondering if such a foolish rule really exists?
The next day during my visit my wife informed me that the nurse who is supposed to be checking her blood pressure and other things, wasn't doing her job properly at all. She simply opened the book and wrote down an imaginary blood pressure and pulse without even checking! I was so shocked at the complete and utter unprofessionalism and negligence in this hospital! My wife was suffering from hypertension and a nurse is basically jeopardizing my wife's health by guessing her blood pressure! How can this be? I approached some senior nurses on the ward to complain about this. They called over the nurse in question and she denied my allegations. I pressed her about it and told her she was lying. Then she had nothing to say and quickly went off to check my wife's blood pressure properly.
I have no words left to describe how shocked I am about this nurse's awful negligence of my wife's health on ward Melor 1B The nurse in question was (name withheld). I am disgusted at her lazy attitude to this most important work. A hospital is supposed to protect the health of its patients but in this case it was jeopardizing their health! It's just not good enough and I demand there to be a full and thorough investigation into this serious matter. (Name withheld) also invented mysterious figures when checking my newborn baby too! As I've said, this is completely outrageous! There is absolutely no excuse to not properly check a patient's health.
As to whether my complaint has reached a more senior figure in Ward Melor 1B, I have no idea. That is why I'm bringing this entire case to the Ministry of Health and to the HTAA hospital in Kuantan. I am severely unhappy and dissatisfied with the appalling service we have received, and would like to see some action taken so that no nurses like (name withheld) are allowed to continue putting patients health at such great risk.
Duncan D. Horne
Am I being too fussy? Do I even have an argument here? I was very upset with the dire effort of service we received, so I lodged this formal complaint. Surely we shouldn't have to tolerate such negligence and rudeness when it comes to our health!
What say ye?