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Hospital supplied equipment - when it breaks...  

 
EmleyMoor
(@emleymoor)
Trusted V-Ratter Registered

I would not be surprised if there are other people here with equipment supplied by a hospital that they need to ensure their quality of life/health. I personally make use of a Philips BIPAP A40 at night - not surprisingly it travels with me on my currently frequent visits to Derbyshire.

Unfortunately, on my last visit, it developed a fault - manifested by a "Check AC power supply" alarm - there was still a green light on the PSU at that point - then after reseating the connector, the light went off. In fact, the fuse in the plug had failed, and on exchanging the mains lead with another, the fuse in that failed too. I had no option but to run it on the internal battery that night.

Just to be sure what was going on, a Sunday morning visit to a supermarket to buy more fuses was required... the silly thing there being their fuses come in packs of 5 - 2 each 13A and 5A, and 1 3A - so I had to buy two packs in order to have one to fit to my laptop lead and one to try in the BIPAP. I tested the BIPAP's lead with the new fuse on the laptop PSU - all OK - but was not surprised it failed again when tried on the BIPAP PSU. Unfortunately the battery was now very flat so I had to manage without the BIPAP until I could get to the hospital on Tuesday.

You might think it would be sorted efficiently there - no such luck! As the specialist person was on leave, I was left dealing with nurses - you'd think they might at least have an electrician on hand! It took some doing for me to convince the nurses where the problem lay - if they'd at least fetched a spare PSU I could (as I had taken some fuses from my spares box) have demonstrated the problem. (This was further complicated by the fact that someone had written, on the note from my phone call made on the Sunday, that it was the humidifier that needed replacing - not a part I mentioned.) After probably 20 minutes of waiting around, with occasional explanations of the problem and how I diagnosed it, a spare PSU was found. Then came the fiddly bit: for some time, in order to discourage disconnection of the power lead from the BIPAP unit (due to it being a somewhat fragile mini-DIN family type), the power lead on these devices has been held in place by a P clip. Fortunately I carry a tool that can deal with the screw, so the actual replacement didn't take too long to do. After a brief (but way longer than necessary!) test, a date label was applied to the power lead and I was good to go.

I completely understand that the hospital can't keep track of everyone's technical knowledge, but I also can't help thinking they should have someone on hand to deal with electrical equipment, at least during normal hours.

"Yes, a bit of wet string may get you a good TV signal here on four channels, but you'll have to dry it out to get Channel 5!"

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Posted : 20/02/2020 9:39 pm
sideband
(@sideband)
Famed V-Ratter Moderator

It's a wonder 'elf an safety' wasn't mentioned because no-one was qualified to do it.....! Glad you got sorted in the end

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Posted : 21/02/2020 1:46 pm
mfd70
(@mfd70)
Trusted V-Ratter Registered

Most, if not all NHS Authorities / Boards / Trusts etc. have some form of Clinical Engineering service who would be responsible for this sort of work. I suspect the problem was due to ignorance of the appropriate department to contact. Much of this is down to "bank nursing staff" who, whilst qualified do not have any local knowledge to be able to sort out these sorts of issue.

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Posted : 21/02/2020 11:31 pm
EmleyMoor
(@emleymoor)
Trusted V-Ratter Registered

@mfd70 I would have thought the person who specialises would have known about any such service. The nurses I dealt with were on the unit at least 18 months ago, and I'd be a little surprised if they didn't know about the service, if it exists. It will be mentioned when I am in in July.

 

"Yes, a bit of wet string may get you a good TV signal here on four channels, but you'll have to dry it out to get Channel 5!"

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Posted : 22/02/2020 9:56 am
mfd70
(@mfd70)
Trusted V-Ratter Registered

@emleymoor

Check this website out; https://www.ebme.co.uk/

 

 

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Posted : 22/02/2020 12:08 pm
EmleyMoor
(@emleymoor)
Trusted V-Ratter Registered

An aside - my planned July admission was cancelled due to the unit being purloined as an overflow stroke unit. Awaiting a new date.

"Yes, a bit of wet string may get you a good TV signal here on four channels, but you'll have to dry it out to get Channel 5!"

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Posted : 30/06/2020 10:13 pm
Katie Bush
(@katie-bush)
Famed V-Ratter Moderator

@emleymoor

Welcome my world. I've twice been omitted from my steroid injections, and not even a hint of an explanatory letter - I think we're all meant to be mind readers! I got a letter when my eye screening appointment was cancelled, but not for these pain controlling meds.

I can appreciate that the NHS is under a lot of pressure at present, but I'm damned sure that it would obviate the need for patients to call their hospital for information, and thus ease the telephone traffic that they so desperately want to avoid, if they simply issued an automated letter form to keep the patients up to date, and quite frankly, at ease as to what's going on in the background - if anything.

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Posted : 01/07/2020 10:27 pm