"North Bristol Hospitals"

About: Southmead Hospital / Urology

(as a relative),

2002: colon damaged by diverticulitis.

Had to go private because I was very ill and was initially told I would get apt in 10 days. That apt cancelled.

Surgery involved removal of part of colon - catheter fitted because of concern re leak in bladder. Urologist removed catheter too soon (I believe contrary to view of general surgeon and, I believe though not expressed because fixed cost on basis 5/6 day stay!) result septicaemia (?) and taken to Southmead for second op.

Standard of cleanliness in Southmead apalling - result MRSA and Cdif. Lack of interest by Southmead doctors - "my" consultant, the general surgeon, based at Frenchay Hospital and had impression Southmead simply wanted me moved to Frenchay.

Nursing staff generally very caring and helpful (night staff on one ward - possibly agency staff not good). Only saving grace for Southmead was standard of food - very good. Frenchay staff on whole excellent but generally too few staff to cope with demanding patients.

I was urged to eat but food dreadful. In both hospitals cleanliness left much to be desired. Cleaning horrible job but vital and seems to be done by contractors - needs to be responsibility of nurse in charge to ensure high standards (particularly of lavatories and bathrooms) at all times. Hospitals also need to remember they are there to serve the public and hospitals are not run for benefit of Managers and Trusts.

Parking difficult and expensive at both hospitals - why should patients and visitors have to pay for parking - none of them want to be there. Wife in Frenchay recently and apparently visitors (who one would think important for well-being of patients) will now only be admitted for limited periods pm which may prove difficult for some visitors.

The one person who stands out was the Consultant General Surgeon who I can only describe as brillant in both his professional ability and care for his patients.

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