"A suggestion about bed baths"

About: St Thomas' Hospital (London)

(as a relative),

Hi, just thought I’d share my story with you.

My partner was taken into hospital sometime ago for asthma treatment, as he had a bad asthma attack. He stayed in hospital for 4 days, until his asthma was controlled.

On the 3rd day, one of the early morning nurses asked if he would like a wash down. He assumed she would give him a bowl and a sponge, so he could refresh himself. He was very surprised and embarrassed when she took it upon herself to start giving him a wash down. He felt like an invalid. He couldn’t understand why the nurse did this. It wasn’t as if he couldn't move, he was quiet capable of looking after his private bits.

I have since heard similar stories from other people, and would like to know why this happens. We can understand if the patient is very ill and can’t carry out certain tasks, but shouldn't they have a choice in who gives them a bed bath, or even have a choice of a male or female nurse. Nurses do a great job, but when it comes to our private parts, shouldn't we have a say?

Maybe hospitals should introduce a system, where the patient can fill in a declaration stating they're choice of a male or female nurse to carry out personal care. The majority of us would be so much happier, and enjoy our hospital stay so much more.

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