"I felt our opinions didn't matter"

About: Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust / Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services – Inpatient

(as the patient),

I was admitted from tier 3 and into tier 4 in early November. Although it was in my best interests it was sprung on me extremely quickly and although there was technically a choice to be informal or not you have no choice about going into hospital. If I had refused id of been detained.

When in hospital I felt like I was in a safe environment but I don't feel I was given the support needed all the time. This was due to short staffing and constantly having NHS bank staff in and out. Although they did do the job they were there for you never felt comfortable enough with them to ask for help and support when needed.

I felt like you were offered more one to one time in the outpatient services because there are constantly so many incidents. I do understand that star have to prioritise during hectic times but it feels like you're in there for no reason when you can't work through any issues.

I felt like our opinions didn't matter because every time we raised an issue it was dismissed. We had the opportunity to discuss things like them on Fridays but nothing ever actually changed as I think the staff just couldn't be bothered to do some of the things.

I also felt discriminated against as some of the staff were very rude about patients illnesses and we were treated with a very low level of respect. We were in a hospital with star that had worked with mentally ill people for years but it was like they still couldn't grasp how hard some things are for us and we would end up being punished because of this.

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Responses

Response from Angie Jackson, Interim Community Service Manager, Mental Health Services for Older People, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

I am sorry to hear that you feel this way, please be assured that your opinion does matter & someone from our involvment team will also respond to you and offer you the opportunity to talk about this in more detail.

It has been extremely busy on the unit, and there have been occasions where young people may not have received as much one to one suport as we would have liked, we are working hard to address this.

I am very aware that we use a lot of bank staff, there are 2 reasons for this, one is to cover our own staff shortages and the other is to ensure that we have extra staff available when young people need a higher level of one to one observations.

We are currently recruiting more permanent staff and we have also agreed with the nurse bank that they will allocate some regular staff to work on the unit rather than having someone different every day. I appreciate that this will not change your experience but we can make things better for the future.

I will speak to the ward manager about the concerns you raise regarding the attitude of some staff and we will ensure that people are spoken to about this.

I hope that this reassures you that we do have the best interests of our young patients in mind and that we will continue to try and make improvements in the way we work.

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Response from Jonathan Wright, Involvement Centre Manager , Involvement Team, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

Hello

I'm sorry to hear you experience on the unit wasn't great and you didn't feel your opinion mattered.

I would like to offer to meet up with you to talk about the main issues you raised and also your thoughts on what would improve young people's future experience. There are big changes currently being planned for the Adolescent Unit and I am determined to make sure that people who have experienced the unit have a say in the planning of its future.

If you are willing to meet please contact me on 0115 9934567 or email: jonathan.wright@nottshc.nhs.uk and I will try and arrange a time and place that is convenient for you.

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