"Recent Admission for Gynaecology & Urology Procedures Boston Pilgrim Hospital"

About: Pilgrim Hospital / Gynaecology Pilgrim Hospital / Urology

(as the patient),

In late June 2014, I was admitted to Boston Pilgrim Hosptial for planned gynaecology and urology procedures. Living in Lincolnshire, we hear so many negative and scary stories about Pilgrim Hospital that I wanted to share an honest and frank account of my experience, which in the main was good. I cannot help feeling that with some changes and attention to detail, I could be writing an entirely glowing report. I have been unfortunate to have suffered many health issues since 2007 and have experienced many doctors and hospitals to be able to compare my recent visit to.

I would be grateful if my feedback could be relayed to the relevant staff and departments, especially where praise and thanks are due.

To start with the positives:

My two consultants: Miss Noor (Gynaecology) and Mr Madhavan (Urology), I cannot find the words to use to express how fantastic both of these doctors are. From seeing them in outpatients where the options and procedures were discussed, in a friendly, professional and dignified way, they liaised with each other to enable me to have all of my procedures done together despite falling in to two different specialities. The day of the op they were reassuring, knowledgeable and could not have been more helpful. After my op they both ensured I was comfortable and understood what had happened etc. They took the time to answer my questions and I felt at ease asking the questions I had and not rushed in any way. I cannot express my gratitude enough and feel fortunate to have the knowledge and expertise of two such compassionate and professional consultants for my care. You would not find better consultants at any hospital.

Moving on to another consultant: Dr Edward Dichmont, the anesthetist responsible for ensuring my general anaesthetic was administered safely and effectively. He is again another excellent asset that Pilgrim Hospital has, he made me feel so at ease about what was happening, explained in detail what I was to expect and answered all of my questions. His "people skills" were exemplary; he ensured he knew everything he needed to regarding my medical history. His mannerisms and care in the anaesthetics room (along with the two nurses) ensured that what was an apprehensive experience was as comfortable as possible and pain free.

I will also briefly mention one of Miss Noor's team of doctors, sadly I do not remember her name but she is obviously learning from one of the best in their field as she too had a lovely caring personality and made my experience a positive one.

Moving on to the recovery room and my nurse (although I did have direct contact with 2 or 3 nurses), wow what can I say other than thank-you! You do an amazing job and quite obviously it is a vocation you enjoy, it is obviously a very confusing time when you are waking from the anaesthetic but you knew exactly what to say and do to reassure me. You ensured pain relief was administered quickly and it didn't matter how many blankets I needed to get warm you kept adding them! I can imagine that the recovery room staff can sometimes get over looked but they shouldn't! Everyone that I had contact with was beyond outstanding.

Moving on to the ward the nurses on M2 were lovely, caring and did their absolute best. I do feel for them though, I am unsure whether the time I was there they had normal staffing levels or whether they were low on staff for whatever reason. I wish to point out (strongly) that I have no issues with the nursing staff on M2 they were amazing and nothing was too much trouble, despite them being over stretched. You could quite easily see they were struggling and on more than one occasion I was apologised to for "forgetting" something; forgetting to get a replacement IV, forgetting to get a nasal tube for oxygen as my sats had dropped, etc. It wasn't because they didn't care, on the contrary they did, immensely, but there were too many of us needing their attention.

The new visiting hours are so much better!

This is where I start to move on to the not so positive experiences, which in themselves are not particularly serious and some may even think I am moaning unnecessarily. However, I do feel if things are not brought to the hospitals attention then improvements cannot be made:

I arrived at the Admissions unit at 7.30 am and was feeling very apprehensive and upset, it wasn't possible for my partner to stay with me, which I do understand. But I felt like I was just another patient or number. The level of compassion shown on the admission ward was of a different level to that experienced anywhere else, just a few kind words at that time would have made all of the difference. Instead it was two hours of feeling agitated and scared. It was obvious I was upset but no one felt the need to ask how I was feeling or if I had any questions. Thankfully my own consultants and anaesthetist were able to reassure me. The admissions unit is the first impression of the hospital that you get and for me it wasn't a particularly good one (sorry).

I also find it difficult to understand why the recovery room was over crowded. They were so full that a patient had to stay on their trolley in theatre until a space in recovery could be found, as apparently (from conversations I could hear) there were no beds on the wards patients were waiting to go to. The Matron had to be called. I don't understand how people can be taken down to theatre without an actual bed waiting for them when they come out.

My next issue is with the meals, I had my op on the Wed morning and for various reasons it was not until Thurs that I was allowed food. I had a small amount of toast for breakfast, other than this I had consumed no food for 36+ hours. When the lunches came, I had obviously not ordered anything and the auxillary/hca showed me what was on offer, the only "meal" suitable as such was a vegetarian chilli (I am vegetarian), sadly a chilli was not an option as I am currently unable to eat spicy foods. I explained this and was offered basically shrugged shoulders. I asked if I could have a cheese sandwich, having gone to look at the sandwiches she had she came back and said no there was only ham! I wasn't expecting a 3 course tailor made lunch but I did think that something like a jacket potato, sandwich or something similar could have been offered. I said I would just have to have the chocolate sponge and custard then. I ate a small amount of this, as it was far too sweet for my taste. When she collected the barely eaten bowl it was obvious that I had very little to eat but still she was unable or unprepared to offer an alternative. I was dizzy and light headed with low blood pressure; I am sure a meal of some description would have helped. I had to wait for my partner to visit to go and get me some lunch, surely this is not acceptable?

Overall, I would recommend Pilgrim Hospital, the staff were knowledgeable, courteous, caring and professional. The environment was clean and I felt safe. I hope that by finding additional finances by cutting back on needless expenses that staffing can be increased. On that point I will add I took my own medication in to hospital with me (as I was requested to do) but barely any of it was used, instead using your own supplies of the same drugs from your trolleys. If every patient brings their own meds in and uses them surely that will enable a small saving on the cost of your drugs bill? Just a thought : )

Thank you to everyone involved in my care. I hope I will not be an inpatient again for the considerable future, but if I am I hope all the staff are as great as the ones I have just had!

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Response from United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust


Sincere thanks for leaving us your positive comments & personal experience of our service and it is warmly received. As a team we are continually striving to improve the patient journey and value both positive and negative comments to help us grow as a team.

I am sorry that you received little help from nursing staff regarding your specific dietary needs, that is unacceptable and whilst I will share your experience with my nursing team I will ensure we learn from where we could have improved.

Michelle Caldwell

Ward Sister

Response from United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Dear cla112e

Thank you for taking time to bring your experience of a theatre episode to our attention. It is kind of you to say the things you do about me. I am constantly in the arena that is our admissions suite and agree with what you say about it being unsuitable for the task it has to do.

I have on previous occasions brought it to the attention of the hospital management and do hope that soon something will be done as I do feel it lets the hospital down. Thank you for your constructive input.

Dr Ted Dichmont

Consultant Anaesthetist.

Response from United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust

Dear cla112e

Thank you for your comments relating to the food.

You should have given the a choice of meal, and if the choice was not available then a meal could have been collected by the ward from the restaurant including jacket potatoes.

We do make sandwiches to request and a cheese sandwich could have easily been made to order.

The chocolate sponge by nature should have been sweet, I will visit a ward when the sponge is on menu next time to taste for myself.


John Spencer

Catering manager