"Lack of communication with next of kin for elderly..."

About: Charing Cross Hospital

Our elderly disabled mother was brought into Charing Cross in the early hours on Saturday morning. The first people to notice her missing from home were her carers who arrived at about 7.00am to get her up; we (family) heard about it at 10am when transport arrived to take her to a Day Centre - they rang and alerted us. Once we discovered her whereabouts and managed to speak to someone we were advised that mum had been asking them to let me - her daughter - know. Staff were not particularly forthcoming about the problem - quoting patient confidentiality - nor were they helpful in advising or communicating with us about how long she was likely to be in hospital so we could co-ordinate her care package. Due to lack of clear communication and transport getting her home on Sunday was unsuccessful and stressful and in the end she remained with you until Monday afternoon. Whilst we greatly appreciate the support and care she received whilst with you, we are very unhappy about the lack of joined up thinking which would have kept the family and all other related parties informed and freed up a bed on Sunday afternoon rather than Monday. Would you please ensure that a system is set up which make sure that next of kin are advised of the admittance of elderly family members. With such knowledge we would have been able to alert others and make contact and phone calls based on exact rather than guessed information thereby freeing up valuable staff time and stopping a bed block.

Story from NHS Choices

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››