Weston Coyney tot sent home from walk-in centre with broken arm
A TWO-YEAR-OLD girl was sent home with a broken arm after being misdiagnosed at a walk-in centre.
Joanne Hollins-Cooper, aged 31, from Weston Coyney, took daughter Jessica to the centre in Hanley after the tot took a tumble at the family home.
Following an examination, Joanne was told that Jessica had just badly bruised the arm and needed bed rest. But three days later, concerns were raised when Jessica could not lift her arm at playgroup. Joanne took her daughter to the A&E unit for a second opinion.
After a series of x-rays, Joanne was shocked to be told that her daughter had broken her arm in two places.
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Joanne said: “Jessica was playing at home and running around, like every toddler does. Before I knew it, she had tripped over and fallen down awkwardly. I tried to have a look but she was crying out in pain every time I touched it.”
After waiting an hour at the walk-in centre in Stafford Street, Jessica’s arm was examined.
Joanne, of Weston Coyney Road, said: “I was told nothing was broken and it was just badly bruised.
“She advised us to have some rest for a couple of days and to give Jessica some Calpol for the pain.
“At the time, I thought ‘they know better than me’ so I believed her when she said it wasn’t broken.
“Obviously, Jessica was very grumpy but I just put it down to her arm being sore.”
But when she did not improve, the family went to the University Hospital of North Staffordshire.
The x-rays revealed that Jessica’s right arm was broken in two places, either side of the elbow.
Joanne said: “I just cried because I felt so guilty that she had been walking around with a broken arm for all that time.
“I had done what I thought was best and trusted the professionals.”
Jessica had her arm in plaster for two weeks. At a further appointment, doctors found there was still a small fracture. She is due to go back for a further check-up in three weeks.
Meanwhile, the family has lodged a formal complaint with the walk-in centre which is run for NHS by Harmoni.
Joanne said: “They have not apologised to me but I have been told they are investigating. I am very angry. We are told to use walk-in centres rather than A&E, to ease the pressure on the hospital – but look what happens when you do.”
Dr Russell Kelsey, regional medical director for Harmoni, said: “As the largest provider of out-of-hours urgent care in the country, we pride ourselves on offering the highest levels of patient care and satisfaction. Any patient concern with our service is treated very seriously.
“We are in the process of investigating this complaint and as soon as those investigations are concluded, we will share our findings with the mother.”