‘World of pain’: Man’s three weeks with broken wrist
HEALTH bungles have forced a Far North man to endure more than three weeks with a severely broken wrist and finally flying himself to Brisbane in hope of treatment.
Ward Krause is a labourer on a former cattle station which now operates as a wildlife reserve near Cooktown.
He was breaking a log "about as thick as a toilet roll" for firewood when his wrist broke in two places on March 6.
A communication breakdown between the Torres and Cape and Cairns health services meant Mr Krause's wrist was still jutting in the wrong direction three weeks on.
"They don't know what they're bloody doing. I'm still in a world of pain at the moment," he said.
Mr Krause made the hour-and-a-half trip to Cooktown Hospital shortly after he was injured but was sent home with painkillers because his arm was too swollen to cast.
He went through four excruciating failed attempts to set his bones before plans were made to send him to Cairns for surgery.
The bushy drove into town to catch a plane about a fortnight ago, only to learn Cairns Hospital was in lockdown due to PNG-related COVID-19 cases. He was told to return to Cooktown for a video conference with a Cairns doctor on Friday last week, and to get an X-ray two days prior.
Mr Krause said Cook MP Cynthia Lui's office suggested he call Cooktown Hospital to bring forward the appointments but his name could not be found in the system.
"It's just a big shemozzle. I can't straighten my arm properly and if I try, the fingers can only move about 20 degrees," he said.
The property managers where Mr Krause works, John and Jan Carson, called Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch for help. They also bought him a ticket to Brisbane in hope of securing surgery.
Mr Entsch said he called Cairns Hospital multiple times but was eventually told Mr Krause would be better off heading south.
"The hospital basically said, you do what you're going to do and we will initiate an investigation later," he said.
Mr Krause was finally booked in for surgery at Royal Brisbane Hospital on Monday morning - 23 days after he first went to Cooktown Hospital.
Torres and Cape Hospital and Health Service Eastern medical services director Dr Tash Coventry said "all appropriate care" was provided to Mr Krause in close consultation with the Cairns Hospital orthopaedic department.
"We regret if any patient or client is dissatisfied with their experience whilst attending one of our health facilities and urge them to contact us to discuss any issues," she said.
Originally published as 'World of pain': Man's excruciating three weeks with broken wrist