"I feel totally let down"

About: Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust / Adult Mental Health Services - Community (City)

(as the patient),

I have been allocated a nurse from the fact team in Newark to provide care for my deteriorating mental health. Due to a crisis I had it was decided with the nurse and my psychiatrist that I needed an admission to an acute mental health unit. Unfortunately there were no beds available and after having been made to wait over three weeks with things continuing to deteriorate I was told they would stop looking and offer more intensive community support.

At this point my nurse rang me and informed me I could have one home visit and one appointment at staff base per week. However when then trying to arrange my home visit I was made to feel so guilty about the distance they would have to travel to see me that I said it was okay. The nurse instantly accepted this and said someone would be in touch for my next appointment.

The following week I was due to see the nurse and my psychiatrist which was arranged but I had to cancel. The nurse informed me this joint visit could be rearranged. That afternoon I had another crisis, resulting in me contacting the team. At this point I was told the previously offered appointment was no longer available and I couldn't be seen by anyone until the following week. I informed them I was highly suicidal and couldn't see beyond that day. Although I hung up at this point no attempts to contact me were made until days later.

The contact I had at this time was from the nurse who said they were ringing to see how i was and to arrange a visit. I requested I could have the previously offered home visit and the nurse said they would call back the following day to confirm. I then told the nurse I had been greatly struggling and had ended harming myself. The nurse responded by saying it was fine and they would confirm your appointment tomorrow. When I said this was not fine it was scary and distressing and I was still feeling panicky about it the nurse said they did not have time to talk about it as the nurse was going out on visits and hadn't intended on it being a therapeutic phone call. I was upset about this as I felt ignored, not believed and like I wasn't important and didn't matter. I asked why the nurse had rang and asked how I was if the nurse didn't have time to talk and the nurse said they weren't prepared to have me question competencies as a nurse. I calmly told the nurse I wasn't doing this and I just wanted some validation of the hard time Id had with no support from the team.

The nurse then asked whether the conversation was finished, to which I answered no and asked why the nurse was getting defensive, but at this point the nurse just said we will confirm the appointment tomorrow and that the nurse needed to end the call.

I then rang to speak to the fact team manager to discuss these concerns but I was informed the manager was in a meeting that day and would get back to me. I am still waiting.

The home visit was arranged but on the morning it was due I had a phone call stating two staff members had called in sick so they could not make it. I was not offered any telephone support or the offer of the meeting at staff base. I said I couldn't think about the following week as I had some big stressful things due to happen so the conversation was ended with an agreement someone would call me the following week.

I feel totally let down and uncared for by my nurse and the team. It's increased my social isolation, my anxiety and agitation, my low mood and suicidal thoughts as well as impacting on my family. My mum is struggling to provide care for me and the nurse assured her three weeks ago that she would put some urgent carers support in place. This has not happened and has not been mentioned since. I really hope changes can be made so others aren't forced to suffer similar situations.

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Responses

Response from Tim Constable, Service Manager, Adult Mental Health, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

I am very sorry that you feel let down by the team and have had a negative experience. I appreciate this must be very distressing for you. I have spoken to Tracey Houghton the Team Leader who is happy to phone you and discuss your concerns if this is suitable for you.

Kind regards

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Update posted by 12345678910 (the patient)

I would appreciate this phone call, however I have left three messages myself with the team requesting to speak to her over the last 2 weeks and heard nothing. The first two phone messages were left prior to publishing this as well.

Response from Tim Constable, Service Manager, Adult Mental Health, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

I understand you have now had a chance to speak to Tracey and I was very pleased to hear you have been able to agree a support plan. Please accept my very best wishes.

Tim

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