"Treatment of patients"

About: Torbay Hospital

I am writing to you because I felt dismayed and concerned at what I observed when I was in the Eye Clinic on 13 March with my mother. The first situation was an elderly lady who was unable to get up out of her chair. She had brought her walker but she was not strong enough to get up on her own. She asked a member of staff to help her. This member of staff was in fact helpful, but said quite clearly that they were not meant to lift patients. This lady was elderly and frail, I can't understand why it should be a problem for nursing staff to help her. At the same visit I saw an elderly gentlemen come into the clinic. He had gone upstairs, but was then sent downstairs and looked quite exhausted. He was hunched over and obviously had trouble walking. When the nurse told him that he needed to go back upstairs he asked if he could have a wheelchair. The nurse looked around said sorry there wasn't a chair available and that they had to be booked in advance. She wasn't unkind, but asked the man to do his best and follow her to the lift. It was agonising to watch. The staff in the clinic are friendly and helpful, so my concern is more to do with the facilities. Some chairs with arms would be good so that patients, especially the elderly can lever themselves out more easily. Perhaps also more wheelchairs could be made available. The atmosphere in the clinic is confusing in the extreme - my elderly mother can't fathom out what's going on, and as an observer, although I realise the purpose of the too-ing and fro-ing, it leaves one feeling very uncomfortable - I can't wait to get out and go home!.

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Responses

Response from Torbay Hospital

Dear Patient, We are very sorry to hear about yours and your mother's experience of the eye clinic and that the standard of your care fell below that which we strive to provide. If you would like the opportunity to discuss your experience with us, 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). We look forward to hearing from you so that we can address the issues you have raised. Kind regards South Devon Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

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