"Some of the staff were friendly ..."

About: Lister Hospital

(as a relative),

What I liked

Some of the staff were friendly and helpful.

What could be improved

Checking that patients who are elderly and ill are washed. Just asking whether any help is needed - in a general way - is likely to be answered in the negative. My husband was left in his faeces and I had to wash him. When I drew attention to this I was told that nurses like to respect the individual's independence and dignity. My husband was discharged after an assessment that pronounced him fit. The bladder problems persisted after he got home and we had to contact Adult Care Services. When I telephoned my GP he asked what had been the problem with the bladder. I had to say that I did not know as we had never been told by any one of the diagnosis or prognosis. Some of the nursing staff were very good but others were rough and unsympathetic - 'What are you making all that fuss about?' was one comment made to my husband. Patients will be difficult and grumpy at times - this can be the nature of illness - surely nurses should understand that. Respect, vigilance and communication could all be improved.

Anything else?

A general feeling that patients are being 'got rid of' as quickly as possible and that no one is really interested in why they are in hospital or that there is any wish to make sure they are better. I suspect this is particularly true of elderly patients.

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Response from Lister Hospital

Thank you for your message, which left us here at the Trust feeling concerned. The experience of you and your husband is not the quality of service to which our clinical colleagues aspire. While that is not to suggest that our staff and services are perfect - there will always improvements we can make and lessons to learn, your account is one that we would like to explore further on your behalf.

If you are willing, we would encourage you to make a formal complaint, so that not only is a thorough investigation carried out but that you also get a detailed account of what happened and why. Most importantly, it will set out what improvements are being made to ensure that your experience is not repeated for other patients.

To make that complaint, simply e-mail the details to patcomplaints.enh-tr@nhs.net.

Of course, action can be taken at the time where patients are happy to raise the issue with either the sister in charge or the matron responsible for the ward. Often the latter is a route that many patients find preferable and it is arranged easily.

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