"No information when my husband was in theatre "

About: Perth Royal Infirmary / Trauma & orthopaedics

(as a relative),

My Husband broke his ankle whilst at work and was taken to PRI which is not our local hospital but the closest at the time. I was very pleased with the care he received in A+E, we were kept up to date and informed of the plan.

He was admitted to ward 7, and stayed there for a week. The staff were generally very friendly and the ward was spotlessly clean.

I did not feel there was alot of communication and we had to ask questions all the time. He had surgery on day 6 to repair his ankle, he went to theatere early afternoon and by tea time I had not heard anything so I called the ward to be told to phone back in one hour, which I did to be told the same again.

As a nurse myself I was becoming increasingly anxious about the length of time he was in theatre, at 6: 15 I called again and still nobody knew anything, I requested that someone call recovery so at least I would know he was ok, however at that point they received a call to collect him.

I understand that staff are busy however because nobody had told us how long we should expect him to be in theatre for it was a very anxious time. I felt that communication could have been better. This is perhaps something that should be addressed - relatives would feel less anxious if kept in the loop and informed.

Despite this I was very happy with the care my husband received from the team.

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Responses

Response from Margaret McGuire, Nurse Director, NHS Tayside

Good afternoon

Thank you for your feedback highlighting how your experience as a relative would be enhanced if communication between ward staff and relatives of patients could be improved.

I recognise from your description of the circumstances concerning your husband's stay in Perth Royal Infirmary that the period of time your husband was in theatre was a particularly worrying time and I am sorry this was not eased due to our lack of contact with you.

You have prompted us to review our current ways of working and to explore any changes we can make that will enable us to be more considerate towards the needs of relatives in your situation.

If it would be helpful for you to be more involved personally in our proposed action and to share suggestions you wish us to consider, I would be grateful if you could please contact feedback.tayside@nhs.net with your contact details.

Kind regards,

Dr Margaret McGuire

Nurse and Midwife Director

NHS Tayside

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