"Upset by my husband's treatment in ECG dept"

About: North Tyneside General Hospital / Cardiology

(as a carer),

My husband who is 86 and suffers from Vascular Dementia attended the ECG

Department today for the fitting of a 24 hr Monitor.

I followed him in having been delayed parking the car. By the time I arrived he was coming back to the waiting area with the monitor in one hand and appointment and return details in the other hand. His shirt was outside his trousers and he was struggling to unfasten his trousers to tuck in his shirt and try to fix the monitor to his belt. I am incapacitated and using an elbow crutch and between us we struggled to get this task completed.

Surely a man of his age and limitations should not have been left to adjust his clothing in a public waiting room. When I asked the person who fitted the monitor why this had happened they merely said "you should have brought him back along".

Has the health service really sunk to a level where decency and compassion are only available on special request?

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Response from Joanne Mackintosh, Service Improvement Project Manager, Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Dear Madam,

I have just read your review and want to provide you with an immediate response. I am so sorry that this was your experience during your recent visit to the hospital. The lack of privacy and dignity that you describe is inexcusable. The response from the staff member equally so. I was very sad to read it.

We have as a trust invested heavily in the training and development of our staff with respect to meeting the needs of people with dementia - it is so disappointing to hear about this gap in our care and I can only apologise profusely to both you and your husband.

The concern you raise is a very serious one and something we want to act on immediately to avoid this happening to any of our patients in the future.

I wonder if you would be kind enough to contact me today to share some more details so that we can look into this matter fully and understand what happened with the team involved?

My address is Annie.laverty@nhct.nhs.uk I hope you can appreciate why we are keen to respond with some urgency whilst the visit is still fresh in everyone's mind.

Thank you very much for finding the time to bring this to our attention. I look forward to hearing from you.

With all best wishes,

Annie Laverty,

Director of patient Experience

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