"I was on a local holiday park ..."

About: Royal Stoke University Hospital

(as a relative),

What I liked

I was on a local holiday park with my family when my Dad took ill with chronic pains in his chest. Not knowing where a local A&E was I phoned 999. The ambulance crew and paramedic that got to him and took him hospital were absolutely fantastic. The Paramedic was from Leek did a grand job helping him to get comfortable and subsequently so did the crew transporting him to hospital.

What could be improved

Our Experience......

On arrival at the Hospital despite being in agony he was made to get off the stretcher onto a wheelchair and then off that onto a normal chair this was pretty much the theme to his visit whenever he was being seen to he was made to get on a bed then made to go back to the seated area all the time while in excruciating pain. His only moderate relief came on the periods he was on the bed sat up at 45 degrees but the amount of tooing and froing from this made matters worse for him. They did take many tests from him and did x-rays etc but nothing was being communicated back to us, I had to ask for updates on no less than 7 occasions as it seemed like they had forgotten us.

To infuriate matters worse a drunken man whom had apparently overdosed on alcohol and paracetemol but was walking around everywhere being a general nuisance was allowed to get on the bed my dad had just come off and go to sleep on it. We also noticed that one of the cubicles had a free bed in it because the disabled girl was in her wheelchair rather than being on the bed. The final straw came when we witnessed the shift change at this point we had been waiting 7-1/2 hours all the time my dad being in pain despite the painkilling injection they gave him shortly before he was shifted off the bed for the final time before the drunk got it.

I had a word with the new nurse on duty and she could give me no explanation or timescale of when he would be seen by a senior doctor nor could they tell us the results of the blood tests taken on admittance. Infuriated and in pain my Dad had, had enough and from somewhere he found the strength to get up and get to the car where we made him comfortable and took him back home to Manchester and to the A&E at MRI after only half the time in there he was seen to and diagnosed

What could be improved...

The unit looks to be in desperate need of proper supervision and resource management to allocate resources more efficiently. The seating area where we were sat was actually 2 cubicles with the curtains and beds removed, put the beds back and move the seating elsewhere.

Communication is paramount! keep the patient informed all the time with updates keeping them in the dark adds to the stress and strain of an already stressful situation.

Pain management needs to be considered as well, it took far too long 5 hours before my dad was even given anything.

The nurses on duty need to concentrate on work while in front of the patients. Two of them dealing with my dad taking blood tests etc were discussing their holidays and someone’s pregnancy all the time while doing the tests.

Refreshments need to be made available for the sick and those waiting with the sick.

De-clutter the dept there were equipment and its associated cabling strewn everywhere. And finally keep the toilets clean.

Story from NHS Choices

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