"Experience of Torbay hospital"

About: Torbay Hospital / General surgery

(as the patient),

I was admitted to Torbay with severe pain in abdomen and a temperature...having no history I was being assessed for the first 3 days and was in a side room (which I was grateful for as the ward was extremely noisy ) It was AE2

I was given meds to lower my temp but after 48 hours they did not seem to be working much to a nurse's frustration.

the fact that I was just a meter or so away from a radiator which was on full blast 24/7 did not help I asked the staff if it was possible to turn the radiator off as I was uncomfortably hot the response was "we don't know were the controls are" I asked for a drink of water and when 40 minuets later it had not arrived I went out into the main corridor to ask again. I could not have been made to feel more of a nuisance by the nurses attitude and the water still did not materialise ...I then asked a third time and after almost 2 hours was eventually given some warmish water. this is unacceptable to me and I only got it eventually after making a fuss the third time.

Having experienced Torbay hospitals food on previous occasions I made arrangements for all my food to be brought in by family and friends but on my third day with everyone at work I had to go against my better judgement and ordered a chicken dinner. Thank God I am fussy about my food for some reason I can't explain before starting the meal I turned over a frozen roast potato only to find the whole inside was hollow where it had rotted and jet black gunk oozed out onto my plate causing me to feel nauseous and distressed at the same time I was very hungry by this time and now very upset.

once again I ventured out to the corridor to catch up with the lady who had just served the food to me. I said excuse me the food you just gave me is black and rotted and another staff member who I was not talking to shouted over that I wasn't supposed to be out of my room! I have no idea what business it was of hers I wasn't speaking to her.

the lady who served the food came and looked and agreed it was unacceptable and offered to replace the meal but as you can imagine I would not have any thing from a kitchen that served food like this. The lady in charge of the kitchen even came down to apologies and offered me more food but by then I was so mortified I could not accept and went with out food for the rest of the day till my family came in the evening.

also on day three I was told I was being moved to a different ward and was promptly taken there by a porter. 20 minutes after I arrived on the new ward a nurse came and said"your not supposed to be here" and I was promptly moved back to AE2 again

On day 4 now in a different ward I was told I needed to have some prep meds for a procedure the following morning I must have fell asleep about 9. 30pm and woke the next morning to find that inexplicably staff had "forgotten" to give me my meds and therefore the procedure would now be delayed. Also a visit from a consultant left me feeling awkward and embarrassed when he berated his staff in front of me which I felt was inappropriate and unprofessional.

I would like to say that this was a "one off unlucky experience "but unfortunately it is not

I absolutely dread being re-admitted to Torbay and fear for the well being of any family member or friend who may have to be treated there and I know from long time experience that the staff attitude and failings all round are not the experience in other hospitals that I have been to in other parts of the country were the care has been fantastic.

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Response from Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust

Dear Lynn63,

We are very sorry to hear about your recent experience at Torbay Hospital and that the standard of your care fell below that which we strive to provide. We would really like the opportunity to discuss your experience with you so that we can try our best to address the issues you have raised..

If you are happy to talk to us about this, please contact our Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) so they can look into your situation in more detail.

A PALS Officer is available in person, Monday to Friday, between 10.00am and 2.00pm. You can contact them by calling 01803 655838 or on our 24 hour freephone number 0800 02 82 037. If you get through to the voicemail service please leave your contact details and you will receive a call back within two working days. PALS can also be contacted by Text Phone on 01803 654742, by FAX on 01803 617162, or via email to sdhc@nhs.net (your email will go direct to our PALS Service).

Thank you for taking the time to provide your feedback. We look forward to hearing from you so that we can look at your experience in more detail and address the issues you have raised.

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