"Poor Hygiene, rude HCAs, No proper wash facilities"

About: York Hospital

Having just spent a night in York District Hospital on the Admissions Ward, Ward 22, this is an experience I would not wish to repeat in a hurry. On arrival I was greeted by a very abrupt, rude receptionist who would definitely benefit from undertaking a course in customer services (18th September, Urgent Care Centre at around 11.30 am). I then saw Nursing Sister (quite quickly) who was lovely and then a Consultant who was equally so. I was taken to another area of the hospital to await admission. Spent 3 hours there, thirsty as no drinking water facilities (that I would happily have paid for). Then moved to another waiting area, where I spend a further hour. I asked for a drink, feeling very dehydrated by this time, none forthcoming Brought up to Ward 22, admissions ward. I asked for paracetamol as I had run out (awful headache) and told I would have to have a drugs chart written up. I have never received this and in the end my daughter brought me some from home. So constant headache for two hours. I eventually, after half an hour on the ward was brought a jug of water, soup and sandwiches. Typical hospital food, so no point in complaints here. I asked where I could get washed. I was told there was the toilet sink (shared by 6 patients) and no other wash facilities. Overnight, the ward was Bedlam to put it mildly. The noise was horrendous, throughout the night. Very little in the way of empathy from HCAs. The way they spoke to elderly, frail patients in the beds opposite me was a disgrace, particularly a rather surly lady. I awoke in the middle of the night to a very confused, elderly lady with a history of falling attempting to climb into bed with me, mistaking me for her husband. No medical staff around, so I guided her gently back to her own bed. She wanted to use the toilet, no staff on hand to help her. The following morning,feeling very dirty having no access to a bath or shower. I asked where I could locate these and was told there was no bathrooms but there was a shower that all patients on the floor shared. I was shown this and that it would be free when there was a vacant sign. I made my way to the shower, indeed a vacant sign displayed but a further sign saying no lock on the inside of the door as it was broken (no privacy, no dignity, thoughts that sprung instantly to mind). I opened the shower door to the horror of an elderly naked gentleman attached to a drip (how safe was that I wondered) promptly apologised and left. Disgusted, I decided to use the toilet sink to wash. Now this in itself was appalling in terms of hygiene. I had visited the toilet on two occasions prior to going to get washed only to find cardboard bed pans containing urine left on a chair (two on the first occasion). On my second visit that morning prior to getting washed, there was a further cardboard bed pan full of urine sitting on the toilet. I had to move this (yuk). Horrible experience.

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Response from York Hospital

Thank you for your posting. We do take comments made very seriously and we would like the opportunity to investigate the particular concerns you have raised. Please contact our Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) on 01904 726262 or email pals.york@york.nhs.uk and they will be pleased to help.

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