"I woke following a fit in the ..."

About: Northwick Park Hospital

(as the patient),

What I liked

I woke following a fit in the A&E department and was immediately comforted by the cheerful attitude and compassionate nature of a nurse who was very friendly and reassuring. Sadly that was nearly the only positive nursing experience I had! The medical team, by which I mean the doctors whose care I was placed in almost immediately talked with me discussing their concerns and what they believed was happening for me. Unfortunately this dialogue did not transfer easily to the nursing team. time and time i found myself in pain, disorientated trying to explain to the ward nursing staff what medication I had been placed on; what the doctors were doing to help me get better and other basic information. The nursing staff decided to place me in isolation and did not communicate to my family or friends that they needed to take certain precautions to avoid possible cross infection. I only discovered i was in isolation when my family were called out by the nurses and ordered to put on aprons, gloves and face masks! I found communicating with the nurses tantamount to being ignored it was almost like I was an inanimate object and they could not understand what I was saying or asking. A number of nights I called the nurses using the bell and received no response. One night I had to mentally talk myself down from an escalating feeling of going into another epilepsy fit! Also the catering team were rude, food was overly stewed. One day the catering persn popped their head in the doorway and told me rather rudely "I know you've got food from home so I wont bring you anything today!" I complained and they disappeared! The night before I was discharged I was woken up at 11.30pm and told to get my things together as I was to be moved to another ward! I wish I had been in this ward from the beginning the nurses, and the auxilliary staff were pleasant, respectful, had a sense of humour and the energy in this ward was conducive to improving your health

What could be improved

Better communication between the managing team on the ward. Respect for the patients dignity and needs, communication between the nurses, auxiliary staff and patients. If the nurses could learn that all patients no matter how ill and unconcious are humand and need to be respected. Better communication between the doctors and the ward staff.

The attitude of the nursing staff instead of being self indignant be interested in their work.

Story from NHS Choices

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Responses

Response from Northwick Park Hospital

Firstly I apologise for the delay in answering your comment.

I am sorry that aspects of your hospital stay were not of the standard that we would wish or expect to be provided. The points you raise in relation to communication and respect and dignity are issues that we do consider to be of a high priority and we are providing further training for staff to make improvements in these areas.

If you would like any of your concerns investigated further please contact the Patient Relations Office on 0208 869 2026.

Kind regards

Ann Curry

Patient Liaison Manager

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