"Lack of care and dignity shown"

About: Frimley Park Hospital (Frimley)

My daughter and I visited an elderly relative in 3F D yesterday evening. This relative is in the final days of her long life, in which she assisted many individuals and families with aid and social care in her work through the royal British Legion, it upset my daughter and I that 3F D could not offer that same level of care to our relative and the other 5 ladies on the ward. On arriving at the ward we found her in pain, discomfort and soiled sheets. My request to have her cleaned and made comfortable took over half an hour. When a single member of staff arrived, according to health and safety there should be two members of staff, not just for the safety of the staff but also for the safety of the patient. My daughter a trained carer offered to help, in fact she took charge. Our relative's notes stated she hadn't been attended too for over 4 hours, as she has a pressure sore on her back she should be being turned every half hour or hourly at the maximum. It was my daughters insistence that our relative was place on her side to discourage more discomfort. Her notes also stated as did the board above her bed that she was able to use a rotunda with aid of two members of staff, how ridiculous. Supper arrived and was dispensed to the patients, no assistance was give, except one patient who was being assisted but a member of staff having returned from the toilet. Of the 5 patients 2 were assisted with their eating by visiting relative's, thank goodness and 2 were assisted by me, a simple process of making sure the patient could reach their meals and opening packets of sandwiches, which one patients declared needed a degree to open. None of it rocket science, just a few minutes of concern and care. My enquiry if our relative was able to eat was not answered even though I asked twice. The next time we saw a member of staff was to remove the supper trays, what would have happened if the relatives and I hadn't been there, presumably the patients would have gone hungry. Where is the care and dignity that these women so deserve at their time of life, what worries me even more we were there just over 2 hours what happens in the other 22. I do not accept a shortage of staff as an answer it is just an excuse.

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Response from Frimley Park Hospital

We are very sorry for your recent experience. Although we were very sad to read about it we are also very grateful to you for bringing it to our attention promptly. The circumstances you describe are clearly not acceptable, falling far short of the high standards we expect as the norm and we apologise for your experience. We want to reassure you that we have already begun a thorough investigation and are taking the matter very seriously. In fact it would greatly assist us if you were able to contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service to provide some more details for this investigation on 01276 526530 or palsusers@fph-tr.nhs.uk. We would also be very happy to meet with you and your family to share and discuss our findings.

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