"Treatment in Brodie Ward"

About: Royal Cornhill Hospital / General Psychiatry

(as the patient),

I was admitted an treated successfully for a manic episode with psychosis. The room was comfortable, ward clean and food excellent. However, there was a lot that was wrong that suggested patient centred care has yet to reach Brodie Ward.

I was free of symptoms by Tuesday, my third day on the ward. But I was kept in for a week to give the Dr time to sort my follow-up care. There was no therapeutic input in terms of psychology, relaxation - all promised in the leaflet. I would like compensation for this time when I could have been recovering at home.

As a voluntary patient I asked to pop out for a bar of chocolate. This was denied. A Dr appeared, told me where to sit in my own room, wanted to ask why I wanted discharged (I hadn't said that), said I'd been manic because I'd stopped taking my lithium (I had not stopped taking my lithium). All rather rude and entirely wrong. Leaflets were produced explained what voluntary meant.

It took 5 days for an inhaler to arrive for me - FIVE days - I need to take it twice per day. Other creams took 6 days, causing physical symptoms to worsen.

Some staff spoke to me like I was a child. When I was irritated, this was something I wasn't allowed to be. For example, I had a cold, had lemsip removed from my room "in case you overdose", but then was refused lemsip or similar from the dispensary because it hadn't been prescribed by a doctor.

Nobody seemed to care about my welfare or have any desire for me to get better. It was all about procedures. While in a vulnerable position, that's actually very scary because nurses have an awful lot of power over you.

None of the services or procedures in the ward leaflet happened or were offered to me. One day, a nurse asked if anyone wanted to go to a relaxation class - I and two fellow-patients went along. We were turned away from the class - it was explained to the nurse, not to us, that we were too late to go in. Patient centred? Occupational therapy centred? I completed a complaint form. On my last day, a nurse told me someone from upstairs would like to talk to me about it - I said I had said everything on the form and didn't have time because I was departing that day. She appeared anyway and even though I explained I did not want to spend more of my time on the complaint as I had said everything in the form, she persisted in wishing to talk.

Doctor availability held up my care. Eg I was followed for two days 24 hours per day when I did not need to be because a Dr hadn't come to the ward to take off the obs. I should have been let home that day. Instead, I had to wait for Drs to email other Drs to arrange outpatient appointments after I left.

I would have welcomed psychological input on how not to get ill upon leaving hospital. As it was there was zero therapeutic input while I was on the ward beyond medication. Zero. Being on a psych ward, especially one with such poor levels of care, is NOT therapeutic.

My flight home was due to be in the afternoon, but it was booked for the evening when my partner couldn't pick me up from the airport. This wasn't communicated to me at all until I started to leave in time for the earlier flight. Again, I was left with the impression that nobody cared about my welfare.

I could go on. I can't say I didn't feel safe on Brodie ward. I did and that's the main thing. But this was by quite some distance the worst care I've had in a psych ward - I was in 7 between 2000-2003, I'm really sad that things have gotten so much worse since I was last ill.

I'd like compensation to cover the cost of my partner having to fly to Aberdeen because I was kept in due to medical admin rather than for my own wellbeing, plus the damage done to my health of being kept on that ward when I didn't need to be, and by way of apology for a job badly done.

Patient centred care. Look it up. Deliver it. It's not about money, it's an attitude and one chillingly absent from Brodie Ward.

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Responses

Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian

Dear patient

Thank you for taking the time to post this feedback and for your positive comments about what went well during your hospital stay. I am glad you are feeling well.

NHS Grampian aims to be a caring, listening and improving organisation which delivers safe and effective care in a person-centred way. I am sorry that we fell short of that aim with your care episode.

Your story raises many issues which I am sure the service will wish to address. I will make sure that the manager of the area is made aware of your concerns and I will ask the manager to provide a response. When this is available we will post it on Patient Opinion. In the meantime if you would like to talk please contact me on 01224 558449 or email me at loldroyd@nhs.net

Kind regards,

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Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

Linda,

It was quite clear from my experiences that the problems I encountered were not specific to the ward I spent time in.

Furthermore, you don't mention who you are. This is also in keeping with the inconsistent use of badges and / or introductions made by staff I encountered on Brodie Ward. Such a simple thing everywhere else in the world, to introduce oneself.

Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian We are preparing to make a change

Hello again.

Thank you for pointing out that I have not included my job title in my responses to Patient Opinion posts. I am very much in favour of openness and transparency, including that staff wear their name badges at all times. Again, I will pass your concerns on to the appropriate manager. NHS Grampian does have a policy which reinforces the necessity of wearing name badges at all times and there is no excuse for staff not following this policy. I apologise that you have found this not to be the case.

As a result of your post I will ask Patient Opinion to add my job title to my signature.

My role is Nurse Consultant in Patient Safety and Experience and I work in the Quality, Governance and Risk Unit of NHS Grampian.

Kind regards,

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Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

Thanks Linda,

So is it your policy that Drs wear badges also? They always seem to operate out with standards set for "staff".

Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian

Hello

Doctors are indeed included in the policy.

Kind regards

Linda O

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Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

I saw 5 doctors during my stay with you, I don't think any wore a badge. What would be the penalty for that and who would tell "the consultant". Also, 5 doctors is a bit much, wouldn't it be better to have one assigned to have some continuity of care?

Also, one doctor woke me during the night, or at least when I had gone to sleep for the evening after 2230, to take blood because the previous Dr hadn't done it right. How could this ever be acceptable behaviour? Please ensure my request for financial compensation for all that I endured in the Royal Cornhill is given proper consideration.

Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

I love that the status of this post is 'change planned' but to do that change relates solely to the auto signature of a member of Grampian staff on this website.

When should I expect a considered response to my complaint? I'm guessing if I don't ask that I just wouldn't get one.

Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian

Hello

The service concerned has asked me to post the response below:

We are sorry that your experience of Brodie Ward did not meet your expectations and apologise that this was the case. We would welcome an opportunity to discuss your concerns with you and invite you to get in touch via Linda's email address. We always welcome the opportunity to learn from the experience of all the patients who use our service.

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Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

I have laid out the problems I encountered on this site. Why do I need to do things via email?

Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

I would have thought that a month would be enough time to respond to my complaints? Do you have a policy on how promptly staff respond to issues raised about patient experience?

Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian

Hello

The service asked me to respond as indicated on 29.5.15. Again we would welcome you getting in touch to talk about your care directly or indirectly via Linda's email address.

We endeavour to repond to Patient Opinion postings withn 2 working days but it can and does take longer to get in-depth responses from services. The service concerned here would prefer not to enter into a dialogue via Patient Opinion but would welcome an opportunity to discuss your concerns as indicated above.

Kind regards,

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Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

My question, which you ignored, was why the response to my comments has to be via email communication rather than on this site.

Update posted by dintoken (the patient)

And I still haven't received a reply to the email I was forced to send. I wasn't keen as it removed my anonymity and took everything offline. Why did you ask me to email my concerns if I wasn't going to receive a response in eight months?

Response from Linda Oldroyd, Nurse Consultant Patient Safety and Experience, NHS Grampian

Hello again.

I am so sorry if I have failed to respond to a personal email. There is a lot of traffic in my in box but that is no excuse. Would you mind resending the original or getting in touch again? We can preserve your anonymity if you prefer. I would be very happy to talk to you about your experiences and perhaps use your "story" for staff education. The use of patient stories is increasing, for this purpose. The term "story" does not imply a fictitious account but rather a retelling of a lived experience. We have done this once before with a patient who had stayed in this hospital. On that occasion it was about the experience of close observation.

I agree that you should not have to take your queries off line if you do not wish to and I will escalate your concerns to the General Manager for that service.

I apologise again for missing your email and offer you the opportunity to share your story with me for the benefit of staff and future patients.

My current telephone number is 01343 567900 but email is probably best as I am frequently away from my desk. My email address is unchanged, loldroyd@nhs.net

Kind regards,

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