"Acute Admission Unit-Psychiatric Services"

About: Mile End Hospital

I was an inpatient on an acute admissions unit at Mile End Hospital on two separate occasions. During both of these admissions I was treated with dignity & respect from all the staff, ranging from nurses to catering staff; support workers etc. Although it was a very difficult experience to be in a hospital, I strongly feel in hindsight that all my treatment was managed effectively. Most of the other patients on the ward were more ill than I was, many with very acute psychosis, and I was experiencing harmful hyponania and symptoms of Emotionally Unmanageable Personality Disorder at the time. I was still able to observe life on the ward around me because I wasn't experiencing psychosis that time. The staff on the ward were run off their feet but I could tell that as a multi-disciplinary team they had everything under control. I never witnessed any patient being ignored or mistreated in any other way. The doors in the nurses's station were always opening and closing as there was a hive of activity everywhere on the ward. Staff knew our names; understood our needs; questioned us when appropriate; allowed space and time for patients; were good humoured and sensitive to all the issues going on around them. When there was an emergency (this occurred many times), all the staff responded quickly and appropriately and I never felt unsafe under these circumstances. It takes a particularly gifted type of person to become a nurse and from what I witnessed first-hand, nurses cared for and worked hard on the behalf of patients on the unit. I am not suggesting for a minute that I have never had a negative experience with an NHS member of staff during other times because I have encountered some people who would have been much better suited to doing something else for a living. For a brief moment whilst on the ward, a nurse whom I liked a great deal looked judgmental about the fact that I told her I was on anti-retrovirals during the nightly round of medication. However, by far and wide during these two hospital admissions I am referring to, my care was outstanding. I would also like to point out that I have a complex psychiatric history and I have caused many others a lot of frustration and exacerbation because of the challenging, difficult, and often manipulative behaviours I engaged in. I mention this because apart from my partner/carer, nobody else other than NHS staff- psychiatrists; nurses; medical secretaries; receptionists et al, have been able to stand by me and place my needs ahead of their own despite my very often difficult protestations which has allowed me over time to make the necessary adjustments, with all their support, to live a happier, more rewarding life.

Story from NHS Choices

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