"Unhappy with dignity and respect shown to my..."

About: Royal Albert Edward Infirmary

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My grandmother is 90 years old and has been treated on Standish ward. Whilst the standard of medical care given to her has been excellent, I have issues with the way she has been treated. As an elderly and infirm lady of 90 years, she needs help to go to the toilet. When I was there visiting one evening this week, she asked me to let the staff know that she needed help. I was told by the nurse to inform the nursing assistant. The lady I spoke with was very rude and told me she was very busy but she would come shortly. I went back to my grandmother and told her someone would come to help. After 15 minutes my grandmother asked me to ask again. I went to find the lady I had asked, and again she was rude and said she would go to my grandmother in a minute. By this time the bell had been rung to signal the end of visiting and I was the only visitor on the ward. I told my grandmother someone would come to help her and put the call button in her hand but as she has poor eyesight, I doubted that she would be able to use it. I left the ward reluctantly but felt uneasy and stood outside wondering if I should go back in to check my grandmother was alright. I am very pleased that I waited, as the woman who said she would help left the ward with her handbag as it was the end of her shift (I know this for certain as 10 minutes later, I saw her get into a car outside the hospital). She avoided my gaze and did not say anything to reassure me that my grandmother had been helped. I went back onto the ward to tell the nurses that my grandmother needed help and they knew nothing of it. I hope that this is just an isolated incident and just one uncaring member of staff but I am now concerned about the level of care that my grandmother is receiving and amount of respect she is shown.

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Response from Susan Heighway, Patient Relations / PALS Manager , Patient Relations / PALS, Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for your posting. We are very sorry to hear of your concerns in respect of your grandmother’s recent stay on Standish Ward. Your concerns have been shared with the Head of Nursing for Medicine who found your account to be very upsetting. She would like to extend her sincere apologies and has explained that we are taking this matter very seriously by undertaking a full investigation. The Head of Nursing has asked that you contact the Patient Relations Department to discuss these issues further.

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