Friday, September 4, 2009

Help! I'm Bleeding!

Despite promises that frontline staff would not be lost as a result of "voluntary redundancies" in Sydney West Area Health Service, three frontline staff of Katoomba Hospital- including two Registered Nurses from the Close Observations Unit have been given voluntary redundancies. What is the "Close Observation Unit" you ask? Well its what used to be called the "High Dependency Unit" of Katoomba Hospital where the critically ill were once managed. Now that it has been downgraded to a "Close Observation Unit" it is staffed by only one nurse on each shift. Well, it takes two staff to perform CPR (Cardiopulmanory Resuscitation) effectively while waiting for the Medical Emergency Team to arrive.
And what about the brand-spanking new Mental Health Unit at Katoomba Hospital? Well guess what? Five of its fifteen beds have been closed since May 2009. The reason? Sydney West Area Health Service will not allow them to recruit a doctor to replace the one who left to join the management of the hospital in a newly created management position. Too many chiefs, not enough indians- which is basically the whole problem with Sydney West Area Health Service. And now that they're in the red financially, frontline staff at Katoomba Hospital are among the positions being shed.


  1. Thank God someone had the courage to speak out! Keep up the good work!
    Even Accident and Emergency Department staff are not being replaced. Last Monday night, Accident and Emergency only had ONE NURSE!

  2. One of the Switchboard operators of Katoomba Hospital was told to "stop bitching" by one of the Executives (whose position other than "Minion of the CEO" is unclear. They have asked for a definition of "bitching". No answer as yet.

  3. Where have all the Critical Incident Reports gone? Time and time again I've put reports in to Incident Management and haven't heard a single word back for years!

  4. I have worked at 5 different health facilities over the last 5 years. The staff at the Blue Mountains hospital are the were the best though the management are definitely the poorest I have experienced. As a nurse the money is not great compared to other professions so professional pride is often the key to making up for this short fall. This means ongoing education for the nurses.
    I have applied for a number of courses over the years and all have been refused. Including ACLS. Which is a bit problematic when one of the areas you work in is ED. I was told that as the Blue Mountains was a peripheral hospital that my position was given to a Nepean Hospital staff member.
    I have also worked as agency staff and when they have resuses it is not unusual to have 6 or more doctors turn up and an army of nurses. Well you dont get that at the Blue Mountains Hospital.
    The management have hounded nurse educators out of a job and have not supported staff.
    The hospital is going to the dogs due to management not representing the hospital. If there is a financial short fall then they are not doing there job and rather than cut staff, get the funds. I have had senior management come in and try to help in ED and nearly suffocating a young boy having an asthma attack as they didnt have the Oxygen on high enough. Lucky I spotted it. Rusty management staff are not a substitute for Nurses. It just plane dangerous.

  5. I've worked at hospital in three different wards for the past 9 years and not once have I ever seen the CEO of the Hospital. I don't even know what she looks like.

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  7. I wonder if the community knows about the closure of the 8 beds in Rehab?


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