1. Cynthia Miller

    On Thursday, June 18th, I went to your Cooper Hospital Lab at Voorhees to have my blood drawn for my PCP. The wait was minimal and the intake associate was kind and professional. When I was called to have the Lab, tech to begin her job. At first, it went well, she stated that she was gonna take “excellent care of me”. I repeated her statement and added that I was pleased with her declaration
    As she was using the alcohol wipe to prepare my right arm. I announced that I was a BAD STICK. That I have been in my body for a number of years and have always been a bad stick. I informed the Tech that my veins and arteries are NOT in the places that her training suggests they should be. I requested her to view the blue veins as they popped up after she applied the elastic band. We both recognized the blue veins that are very visible on the outer side of my arm. Yes, these veins are prominent enough to see easily but none can be felt in the middle of my arm, on the inner fold of my arm. I encouraged her to notice the absence of any vein in that area. I was aware she had not felt any artery by her repeated tapping and pushing on my inner arm fold. She requested that I pump my fist. After which she still felt nothing. I repeated that the blue vein she saw on the outer side of that area was the ONLY good stick.
    Your tech ignored me and punctured my arm two or three centimeters below the inner fold. Then began moving the needle up and down. side to side searching for the vein. OUCH! She then moved the needle toward the blue vein that is easy to see which is located on the outer side of my arm. The ONE I requested that she use, in the first place. She ran into a smaller vein and proceeded to fill a few of the many vials that were requested by my PCP. As I watch my blood slowed with each transfer of vials. I then warned her that the vein would collapse and as the last words left my mouth the blood stopped flowing. All I could add was “I told you so”. She then got a new needle and stuck my arm close to where she’d begun the first time. She repeated the up and down, side to side searching for a new vein. This time sticking the needle in the blue vein I requested she’d use directly rather than the painful way she had chosen, more than once.
    She then verbalized using an accusatory tone “are you fasting?”, “What did you eat today?” I was so taken aback that I responded that I’d had a glass of juice just before leaving my home. In my shock, I add that it was my custom to drink water throughout each day. This tech disregarded my knowledge of my own body. I normally tell anyone that is about to draw blood that I’m a Bad Stick. The better of the phlebotomist and even an anesthesiologist have after feeling for the vein in the middle, not finding it, agree that I know my own body. Between you and me even during my grade school years, finding a vein was difficult and required the eventual use of the side visible veins to be used. By her tone, she blamed me, it was my fault she refused to accept my knowledge of my own body.
    This encounter left me with three visible red and sore puncture wounds. That, if she had accepted my knowledge and advice would have resulted in just one. I ask that your lab techs learn to acknowledge and concede the body knowledge of senior citizens and not tax us with multiple needle punctures.

    • Cooper University Health Care

      Hi Cynthia, thank you for this feedback. I would like to connect you with our Patient Relations team so that they can learn more about your experience and appropriately address your concerns. Please contact our team at 856-342-2432, or please email socialmedia@cooperhealth.edu with the best way to reach you. I appreciate the opportunity to assist. Sincerely, Rosaria, Cooper Social Media

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