"A traumatic experience"

About: Royal Blackburn Hospital

Unfortunately my grandmother fell at home aged 91 and took a bump to the head. She was taken in for review of her condition. When she went in although she had sustained an injury she was still the same lady she had been. After a week we were fairly sure she would return home as all scans etc came back clear. However after a couple of weeks it became clear she was deteriorating.she didn't eat and it was clear nursing staff didn't have time to Feed her. It then became aparent the low level of care didn't stop at the basics....on our daily visits we learnt from grandma that one of the nursing staff had been very dismissive of her needs to use the toilet and had called her persistent in the use of her buzzer. Grandma was very upset by this incident. When we asked daily to speak to a doctor we were told that it was best to speak to a nurse... We did only to be told that she couldn't read the doctors notes and she didn't have any further information for us. When we said this wasn't acceptable and asked to speak to a junior doctor (who was so busy he had his feet up on the desk) he told us he would be in to see us once he had read the notes after fifteen minutes we went back to the desk and confronted the doctor who hadn't moved away from his collegues who were obviously of more interest to him than our family member. After a few more days grandmas was left consistently without water ok food and her buzzer was taken off her.At this point we asked to speak to her consultant. We were told we would have to make an appointment which we did.we sat with her for three hours nobody came near and her buzzer was left out of reach when the consultant attended we asked if this was acceptable and if he would like his relatives to be cared for in this way he said it was unacceptable. The care improved a little over the next few days until when she deterirated further grandma seemed delirious and unable to form a sentence we asked for an update (again no information on her care was ever given voluntarily) we were told she had heart failure and the outlook wasn't good.the nurse also said that grandma had been given the incorrect dosage of her medication that didn't help. A few days later they told us that she had had a stroke scans showed she hadn't and that all the scans and tests were clear even though he was continually deteriorating. When there was no improvement grandma asked for us to bring her back to clitheroe hospital so she could be with her family and be in the town she had lived her life in. A week later and we had been dismissed about moving her back to clitheroe numerous times. We spoke to clitheroe who ha arranged a bed for her only to be told that at this point she was too ill to move.we insisted she be loved back to clitheroe and she was with us for another week surrounded by her family and she passed away on the surroundings she wanted.my message is please make sure you can visit them daily to see if they are being looked after.

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Response from Wendy Stobbs, Patient Experience Manager, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust

Dear Jen

I am very sorry to hear about your experience of care in our hospital for your grandmother, I have sent your comment onto the manager of the area to get their response, but would really appreciate you getting in contact with either myself- Wendy Stobbs, 01254 734471 or email me on wendy.stobbs@elht.nhs.uk; or our Customer Relations team on 01254 733700 or complaints@elht.nhs.uk if you would prefer who can advise you of your options in raising these concerns further.

It would also be helpful for us to understand which area of the hospital this was in, so that we can make sure this does not happen again through talking to staff and highlighting concerns about care and communication with relatives and carers. We also have weekly meetings called Share2Care on all of our wards where key messages about patient experience and feedback are given to all nursing and medical staff- and I will ensure your comments are fed back into this.

My condolences to your family and please be assured your comments will be acted upon

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