"So much better than expected"
About: Royal United Hospital Royal United Hospital Bath BA1 3NG
Posted by Peter Muirhead
On the first of November 2013 at around 11p.m. I suffered a heart attack and was taken to Bath Royal United Hospital as an emergency admission. It was a friday night and understandably the A&E dept. was busy but nevertheless I was treated with kindness and and compassion plus high standards of professionalism. I was transferred to the Medical Short Stay ward for further care, assessment and to await treatment. It was decided that I should have angiography (dye injection in the heart arteries to establish which narrowed sections needed treatment) probably followed immediately with coronary angioplasty(the insertion of stents which are short tubes of stainless-steel mesh that keep the arteries open to assist blood flow). It was necessary for me to wait several days for my treatment as other more urgent cases of people needing treatment had to take priority. This I fully understood and accepted and in fact was reassured by in the knowledge that I was not on death's door! The waiting period gave me an opportunity to observe and experience other aspects of the care and service offered by this hospital. I was most surprised to be given a number of choices of freshly cooked meals which were very tasty and comforting. Well done kitchen staff ! The doctors and nursing staff were excellent in every way and carried out their duties with good humour. They also seemed to deal with a wide variety of patients with equal care and respect of dignity. Included amongst the other patients was an unfortunate man who had clearly had a "liquid" sunday lunch and from the moment he arrived was protesting his dislike for hospitals and wish to discharge himself. In spite of the best efforts of the staff to offer him care and treatment he eventually chose to leave. A doctor had made clear to him his need for care and the risk that he would be taking in choosing to leave. The doctor insisted that the man repeat back to him what advice he had just been given to be clear that he understood the risk he was taking. Moving on to my treatment. I will not detail every step of the procedure, Suffice to say that the surgeon and his team carried out the angioplasty and inserted three stents initially. After a period of recovery at home I returned this week (4/12/13) for a final fourth stent to be inserted. I was delighted to meet up with the same excellent team on this occasion and went into the operating theatre with total confidence. At every step the doctor kept me fully informed and his calm confidence was very assuring. Happily he was also able to tell me that the previous 3 stents had settled in well and were performing perfectly. As I now sit at home moving towards recovery I can say that I feel remarkably well and am looking forward to a healthy and happy Christmas. Finally my thanks to all the nursing staff on the Cardiac ward.Their dedication to patient care in times when criticism of the N.H.S. seems to be the "default setting" of press and public is remarkable. Thank you.