"My father had a bad death"

About: Basildon University Hospital

(as a relative),

My father died around 3 yers ago in Basildon Hospital from a second bout of C-Diff. He was admitted in June with a stroke, he died after suffering badly.

Paralysed down one side and blind, his meals were left untouched. Liquids, so important once he had contracted C-Diff, were left unopened (in the case of the nutritional meal supplement), or too far to reach in the case of the water jug. In either case he could not see them, and could not have reached them as he was immobile. He complained that he was lying in his own excrement, it was heart wrenching. He often cried.

My mother and I eventually caught up with the Doctor who agreed that in the circumstances a drip would be an ideal and desirable solution. The next day we were delighted to see a drip installed, but it was empty. We never visited Dad to find the drip anything other than empty, and we do not know, to this day when or if that drip ever got changed, despite constant reminders to any nurse not too busy to listen to us to change it.

Nursing was not in evidence. Everyone was too busy to answer our anxious queries, or clustered round the nurses station chatting. We took food in, we made sure Dad drank, but it broke our hearts to hear him say how much pain he was in, and nothing seemed to be done for it.

As visitors we had to wear a plastic apron and use hand gel. But nurses and administrators often came in lacking either. Visitors' toilets were often overflowing with dirty paper towels and obviously were not cleaned regularly. We worried for the lack of hygiene.

Dad recovered (or did he?) from his first bout of C-Diff and was moved to a geriatric ward where plans were made for his release home. Within a week he contracted C-Diff again, and died. Me and my siblings desperately wanted to put in an official complaint, but my mother would not hear of it, being in deepest grief after 63 years of marriage to a wonderful man. My father had a bad death for which we, as a family, have never forgiven ourselves.

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