Letter: Hospital trip result: confusion, concern


My mom got really ill and went to Samaritan Lebanon Community Hospital by ambulance.

The hospital decided that she needed to be hospitalized. They told my father that they had no beds and that there was not a bed from Lebanon to Portland, and that they were trying to find her a bed in Portland.

After several hours they said they had found one in Hillsboro and they were making arrangements to take her by ambulance to the Hills-boro hospital. At that point my father was very hesitant to let her go, but SLCH promised him that it was going to be fine.

As my 87-year-old father stood there and watched the ambulance take my mother away, they gave him the name and phone number for the hospital in Hillsboro, with the promise that everything was going to be fine.

My father headed home to get a little sleep before we started to make plans on what we were going to do.

My father got up early and called the hospital that SLCH said they had sent my mother to, to see how she was doing. To his surprise, the lady on the phone told him that they had no one there by her name.

At that point, my father called me and we both started making calls. My father called the hospital in Hillsboro again and the lady told him to call the ambulance group that had brought my mother to Portland. I called SLCH and told them what was going on and I wanted to know what they had done with my mother!

They told me they would have to call me back.

They called me back at the same time the ambulance group told my father where they had taken my mother. She was on the other side of Portland.

My father and I spent a half day just looking for my mother. No one had the decency to call my father to let him know what had happened to my mother. Shame on you, Lebanon Community Hospital.

But to top it off, the hospital in Portland was putting my mother in ICU and the doctor in ICU needed to get hold of my father. The ICU doctor called the phone number that SLCH had sent with my mother and to the doctor’s surprise, she ended up with the SLCH Emergency Room number, and not my father’s.

Of course, they didn’t know who the doctor in the ICU was talking about and didn’t have anyone with my father’s name in the emergency.

If it wasn’t for us being able to get hold of a family member to get to my mother before my father and I could, the doctor in the ICU would have never gotten my father’s phone number until we could get into Portland.

Again, shame on you, Lebanon Community Hospital!

Finally, after a week and we had come home, someone called my father and her statement was “you had a complaint,” as if it was no big deal.

Well, I am here to tell you it was a big deal. I am really sorry, but what happened to the passion, respect and integrity? And maybe a little bit of communication to the people that they are helping.

I, at this point, will not trust and will always be keeping an eye on you, and you will be in my prayers that you will not do this to any other family.

Cindy Farrell

Sweet Home

Editor’s note: Due to the nature of this letter, we offered Samaritan Lebanon Community Hospital an opportunity to respond. Here is the response, on Monday, Aug. 23, from spokesperson Erin Crain:

“At Samaritan Lebanon Community Hospital, we take pride in caring for our community and as part of our journey to be a high reliability organization, we strive for zero harm. This situation, unfortunately, did occur and we have since completed an internal review to determine the root cause.

“In this particular case, although the patient was transported to the intended hospital, incorrect information had been conveyed to the family. Once we learned this, one of our hospital staff members spoke with the family to explain what had happened and apologize.”