LONG, PAINFUL HAUL: After attending the emergency departments at the Noosa and Nambour hospitals and having an ambulance come to her home, Jenny Clement is dissatisfied with her treatment by the medical system.
LONG, PAINFUL HAUL: After attending the emergency departments at the Noosa and Nambour hospitals and having an ambulance come to her home, Jenny Clement is dissatisfied with her treatment by the medical system. Warren Lynam

My agony: I was let down by hospitals

AT JENNY Clement's lowest point, she had an axe in her right hand, ready to cut her left arm off.

Ms Clement, from Boreen Point, thought she was having a stroke or heart attack when she experienced "intense pain" from her shoulder to her fingertips in August last year.

She was taken by ambulance to Nambour General Hospital, where she said a duty nurse did an electrocardiogram on her heart.

Ms Clement said no other tests were carried out and despite numerous doctors looking at her arm, no one provided her with a diagnosis and she was discharged.

On her own observation, her arm and fingers were getting worse and she drove to Noosa Hospital.

"The most that this particular doctor suggested was for me to have an ultrasound, but did not request for me to have an ultrasound right there and then," she said.

"Once again another professional doctor couldn't diagnose me and sent me home knowing full well I was in extreme pain."

A Ramsay Health Care spokeswoman confirmed Ms Clement attended the Noosa Hospital and comprehensive notes verified she had been observed and several tests were undertaken.

"Unfortunately, the ultrasound was unavailable at the time, but the patient was advised to return the next day," she said. "The hospital could not comment further due to patient privacy."

Ms Clement said she spent two-and-a-half days in excruciating pain. "I had an axe in my hand, ready to take my arm off," she said.

Once again she called an ambulance and two paramedics came to her home.

"They said there was nothing more that they could do for me and they left me ... in this intense pain," she said.

Desperate, she called a friend, who called triple zero.

"Two male paramedics arrived and took one look at me and said you're fatal, you've got no blood flow and no pulse," she said.

At Nambour hospital, an emergency ultrasound discovered an 8cm blood clot in her left arm. Ms Clement was told she had 10 minutes to get to theatre, otherwise she would lose her arm.

Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service chief operating officer Karen Roach said they had not previously been made aware of Ms Clement's concerns until the Daily contacted them.

"Now that we have been made aware of her issues, a review of the management of this case has commenced," she said. "The executive director Medical Services has endeavoured to contact the patient and will continue to do so. The Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service must respect patient confidentiality and therefore will not be making public comment."

Six months later and Ms Clement said she still had little strength and feeling in her arm because of oxygen loss.



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