On Thursday 10/19/2006 Brentson fell down the steps at our apartment complex. When Brentson fell he hit his butt and lower part of his back on the steps. However, he was complaining with his upper stomach and chest hurting. This concerned me greatly because I was afraid he might have ruptured an organ or something else… So, I took him directly to the Emergency Room at Skyline Medical Center. Upon arriving I signed him in and I advised the Emergency Room Attendant at the sign in desk that my son, Brentson needed to be seen because he fell down a flight of steps, but that I needed to advise him that we both have a deadly anaphylactic allergy to peanuts and nuts and that anyone that comes in contact with us and/or comes in the room with us needs to be advised of our allergy. That our anaphylactic peanut & nut allergy is airborne. Therefore, if anyone had eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts that day that they need to stay away from us. The attendant looked at me like I was crazy. I advised him that he better take what I just told him as “the gospel” because this is extremely serious that our allergy is airborne and it can kill us in a matter of seconds! He said, “He would let everyone know.” The triage nurse called us back, and before Brentson and I walked into the doorway, I asked her, “If she had eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts that day?” She said, “Yes.” Brent got away from the triage nurse immediately and he went back to sit down in the waiting area. I took several steps back away from the nurse and I told her that the E.R. Attendant was supposed to advise her and anyone else that would have direct contact with us, about our anaphylactic allergy to peanuts and nuts due to our allergy is airborne. The triage nurse apologized and told me that she would get someone else for us that was safe for us to be in the same room with. A few minutes later another triage nurse called Brentson’s name for us to come and get Brentson’s vital signs taken. I asked this triage nurse if she had eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts and she said, “No.” Praise God! She took Brent’s vital signs and then brought us back to a room in the E.R. Department to be seen. The Registered Nurse walked into the room that would be taking care of Brentson and I asked her if she had eaten anything that day with peanuts and/or nuts? She said, “NO.” I advised her of our anaphylactic allergy to peanuts and nuts. I advised her that Brentson’s allergy is airborne. She said that she understands. I asked the nurse if she was told this information prior to me advising her of it? She said, “No.” When Brentson and I were giving his nurse the information on what happened to him when he fell down the steps a physician that was suppose to take care of Brentson walked into the room. I asked her if she has eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts that day? She said, “YES.” I asked her to leave the room immediately, due to our anaphylactic allergy to peanuts and nuts! She apologized on her way out the door and said, “That she would send another doctor in the room that hasn’t eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts.” A few minutes later another physician opened the door and said, “That he was safe!” I still had to ask him, “Have you eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts today?” This physician said, “No, I haven’t eaten anything with peanuts or nuts today.” He examined Brent and then ordered some blood work and x-rays. The lab tech came into the room to take Brentson’s blood and I asked her if she had eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts today? She said, “No.” Praise God, but no one told her either about our peanut or nut allergy! Talk about poor communication at Skyline
Medical Center! What communication? When Brentson was getting his blood work done, two x-ray techs came into the room. I asked them if they had eaten anything with peanuts and/or nuts that day? They both said, “Yes.” I asked them to leave the room now! I advised them of our anaphylactic allergy to peanuts and nuts, that Brentson’s allergy is airborne and that they need to leave now! When leaving one of the x-ray techs said that she will get someone else. I was beyond irritated at this point! Then I noticed that Brentson was broken out in hives. We had been exposed to so many people that had eaten peanuts and/or nuts! I stuck my head outside of the room that Brentson was being treated in and I started screaming that I need the physician that was treating Brentson’s and the nurse now! That Brentson was broken out in hives he is having an allergic reaction and they better get him some Benadryl now or I will administer it to him myself! The nurse told me, “that I cannot give him medication when he is in the E.R. that it is against hospital policy!” I advised the nurse, that I honestly didn’t give a damn about your hospital policy that if she didn’t get the doctor in there now that I will give Brent Benadryl and it wasn’t anything she could do about it!!! Needless to say the doctor was there in a split second! However, the Emergency Room Attendant that checked us in at the front desk was walking by the door at the time the physician was coming into the room and he made the comment to Brentson, “Hey, Peanut Butter Boy, I just ate a peanut butter cookie!” What a jerk!!! All I can say, is that he better be glad that I was worried about Brentson’s life at the time or I would have gone after him and he would have gotten a ear full! Some people are unbelievable! After the doctor looked at Brentson he agreed he was having an allergic reaction and he ordered Benadryl for Brent and ordered the nurse to hook Brent up to a heart monitor, blood pressure monitor, and a monitor to measure his oxygen levels. I brought Brentson to the hospital because I was worried about him having a ruptured organ but then all of our worries were shifted on him going into anaphylactic shock! I was furious! Brentson was extremely upset because he was terrified that he was going to have to get his Epi-Pen. I was sitting on the side of the bed trying to calm him down, and he recognized that I was broken out in hives too. I took a dose of Benadryl that I carry in my purse at all times in case we are exposed to something or someone that has eaten peanuts and/or nuts. This E.R. visit was getting worse and worse! What I found to be the most alarming with our visit to the E.R. was that the people who are supposed to be “Medically Educated” and the ones that are suppose to know how to handle this kind of situation did not handle it correctly at all! If we aren’t safe at a hospital, where would we be safe…? NO WHERE! Needless, to say the x-ray techs came back with mask, gloves and gowns on, and they gave Brentson and I mask too. They couldn’t find anyone who hadn’t eaten something with peanuts and/or nuts so the doctor told the x-ray techs if they took this precaution we should be okay. I asked the x-ray techs don’t you think it is little late for you all to start taking precautions now…? We had already been exposed and we were already broken out, the allergic reaction had already started! I guess I should have been thankful that they were finally starting to take precautions, but it was a little too late! I was beyond mad at this point! However, my concerned was to keep us from being exposed to anymore peanuts or nuts and to try to keep us from going into complete anaphylactic shock! The x-ray techs took Brentson’s x-rays and everything looked good. They monitored Brentson for a little while longer due to he was still broken out in hives and they needed to make sure that his allergic reaction didn’t get any worse. Our visit to Skyline Medical Center was a total nightmare! I called the Administrator over the Emergency Room epartment at Skyline Medical Center on Friday 10/20/2006 and advised him of our visit and that I wanted to make a complaint! I advised him that, the E.R. Department at Skyline Medical Center had a complete and total breakdown in communication and due to this they could have killed my son and I both! I asked him if there was a normal policy and procedure in place that the hospital staff should follow when a patient has a severe anaphylactic allergy like Brentson and I have? He said, yes and he was extremely concerned due to not one of the hospital staff members, (triage nurse, the R.N., lab tech, x-ray tech and/or physician) ever looked at Brentson’s “Red Allergy Alert Bracelets” on top of all of the other things that happened. The Administrator over the Emergency Room Department at Skyline Medical Center advised that every staff member (Emergency Room Attendant, Triage Nurse, the R.N., the physicians, the lab tech, and the x-ray techs, etc.) that came in contact with us would be disciplined and made to take classes on how to handle a patient with a severe anaphylactic allergy! This is the only hospital in the Madison, Tennessee area since Tennessee Christian Medical Center closed and started just handling rehab patients. We would have to drive to Nashville which is a good 10 to 15 minutes away to the nearest Emergency Room. So, unfortunately in an emergency we don’t have a choice but to go to Skyline Medical Center. The Administrator called me back yesterday, Thursday 10/26/2006 and advised that the staff didn’t think that our anaphylactic allergy was that serious and/or that severe..? Not that serious? I told them (everyone that came into any contact with us) how deadly and how serious our allergy was, they just chose not to believe me! I guess they wanted to see for themselves if we would go into anaphylactic shock and they wanted to call my bluff! I advised the Administrator that no one in the medical field should act or treat a patient, like we were treated, especially when the patient is telling the medical staff that they have a deadly anaphylactic allergy! I advised the Administrator that all of the hospital staff should always treat a patient that says that he/she has an anaphylactic allergy with extreme precautions, until they find out otherwise about the patients allergy. I hope and pray that we never have to go back to Skyline Medical Center.
Laura & Brentson Duke
This message is intended for where the writer posted it. Any distribution of this message in any way is prohibited without the written consent of Laura Duke. I reserve the right to pursue all legal means at my disposal to enforce my son’s and my privacy!