"Appalling care at the Lister"

About: Lister Hospital / Accident and emergency Lister Hospital / General surgery

(as a relative),

My husband was sent to lister for emergency surgical treatment by his gp. He was left without food and minimal fluids for approx 60 hours whilst they prioritised other cases ahead of him.

When they came to take him to theatre for the first time, because he had had some sips of water they cancelled the operation, the surgeon said they had told him not to drink, but they hadn't. Then they couldn't perform the op as they didn't have a bed for him to go into afterwards.

Finally after 60 hours they operated. It took 4 hours for him to get some pain relief and an Iv saline drip as he was dehydrated - he had to keep asking on a number of occasions for it. The morning after the op the dr came round to see him, because had gone to the toilet at the time dr decided to see him, the dr left and wouldn't wait for him to come back.

Dr was supposed to come back later that afternoon to see him but didn't. He was supposed to have dressing changed each day, but the nurse wouldn't change his dressing the day after the op because she said the dr needed to see it first!

The ceiling in the ward was filthy. Staff were on minimal cover and either run off their feet or conversely hanging around yakking when they should have been looking after their patients. I think prisoners get better treatment than my husband got. Absolutely disgusted that millions of pounds are being spent on new wards and buildings at the hospital and basic care, attention and cleanliness is going to the wall.

Does the chief exec ever "walk the wards" to see exactly what is happening at the hospital? Where is the CQC to look into this terrible lack of care?

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Response from Peter Gibson, Associate director, public affairs, East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust

You clearly are very unhappy with your husband's care and with justification if your account is anything to go by. What needs to happen next is to have all of this investigated formally because much of what you describe deserves nothing less.

Perhaps you would be so kind as to contact us via generalenquiries.enh-tr@nhs.net so we can get our complaints team colleagues on the case?

At the very least, you and your husband deserve an apology for any failings as your experience is not typical of the quality of care provided by our surgical team colleagues.

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