"A week long stay"

About: Hereford County Hospital

I had an accident that left me needing surgery.

Arriving at A&E by car was a mistake - we should have called an ambulance as I was in a lot of pain. Unfortunately the system meant I had to wait in A&E reception when I really needed pain relief. One receptionist was very helpful but the triage nurse was a little off-hand and didn't get the urgency of the situation. Once the consultant was aware of the severity of my injury they saw to it that I had adequate pain relief and prompt attention.

Radiology were very considerate and careful to avoid inflicting pain by moving me un-necessarily. I felt they really knew their job and were very efficient.

The injury needed surgery and I was admitted to a side room on Teme Ward. The room was clean and very comfortable.

Surgery was carried out the day after the injury. I was unlucky and had complications. These were picked up and treated without delay. My husband was kept informed of what was happening.

I needed a lot of nursing and I felt all the nurses and health care assistants genuinely cared about my wellbeing. Agency and staff nurses seemed to work well together, although it is obvious that most agency staff are less efficient as they need more guidance from colleagues. On the whole medication rounds and patient observations were done on schedule, and staff responded quickly to 'nurse call' alarms.

The food I was offered was fine. With the tiny budget (£1.80/patient/day?) I think the variety and quality of food is impressive. The catering staff were all friendly and accommodating. Being offered a hot drink in bed, 4 - 6 times a day? Luxury for someone who rarely has time to drink a whole cup of tea before a child needs help or the phone rings!

My Consultant has been brilliant. They communicate really well, I trust their judgement and feel they really care about my case.

My impression was that the more junior doctors are stretched and that there is not adequate supervision from more experienced colleagues. The only negative experience I had was when two doctors (an SHO & (I think) locum staff doctor) changed a dressing without ensuring I had adequate pain relief. They appeared to be unsure of their treatment plan, and took out their insecurity on me and the nurse assisting them. I was able to highlight my concerns to the consultant though, and felt he took these on board, which is what you want when making a complaint.

Things that could be improved? 1) fewer types of uniform - if takes a while to work out who's who, especially if you are out-of-it on morphine! 2) pharmacy - how can it take so long to dispense medicines for patients awaiting discharge? This was the same 7 years ago when I had my daughter at the hospital!

Best bits? 1) The staff nurses on team ward and the HCA.

2) A member of staff in the plaster room

Generally I was very happy with the care I received. No one wants to be in hospital, but Hereford County made it as good as it could have been.

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Response from Hereford County Hospital

On behalf of the Wye Valley NHS Trust thank you for your comments in respect of your stay in the County Hospital, we apologise for the delay in responding to your comments but we have experienced problems with our web page recently.

We will pass your comments on to the relevant departments in order that they can share with their staff the positive and negatives of your stay.

We hope that you have made a good and speedy recovery.

Patient Experience Team

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