"Too busy chatting to care"
About: Stoke Mandeville Hospital Stoke Mandeville Hospital Aylesbury HP21 8AL
My father was admitted to Ward 2 in February of this year having been admitted following a fall on another ward at Stoke Mandeville which resulted in him breaking his hip. He was not operated on for 2 weeks and became extremely frail unable to feed himself or even raise a cup to his lips by the end. He had very little help with this and was dehydrated, and confused. As I lived 120 miles away, I was unable to visit every day. When it was mentioned to one of the ward Sisters that I was concerned that he could not drink by himself I was told "He can do it if he wants". The day before he died 3 weeks following his admission, I arrived on the ward to find him propped up in a chair, he could hardly speak or move. He had a cup of juice in front of him, the cup was the soft type you get from a water dispenser , no lid. He could not raise it to his mouth. He just moaned that he wanted to get back into bed and that sitting hurt his hip. He was fairly unresponsive. I asked a nurse to help me get him back into bed and was told "we will do that later". Six of them were clustered around the desk chatting and laughing away. I suggested that the cup in front of my father was not appropriate and asked whether he was getting help with eating and drinking (he had a red sign above his bed indicating he required help). They didn't know, cared less and continued chatting. A meeting with the doctor revolved around the fact that they wanted him discharged and where was he to go, although it was obvious he wasn't fit to go anywhere. I was phoned the next morning to say he died in the night and that the staff were very surprised. I wasn't.