"Concern about the nursing care of my father"

About: Nevill Hall Hospital / Clinical Haematology

(as a relative),

My father who was suffering from prostate cancer came to Neville Hall Hospital for a blood transfusion over the in August 2009. Sadly he told me he experienced very poor levels of nursing care. In fact, as a family we feel my 78 year old mother carried out most of his nursing care (including changing the bed when necessary and putting him on the commode, very difficult for her as she's 5ft. 3ins and he was 6ft 1in).

My mother generally found the nurses to be unengaged, uncaring and impatient. My father coped with his illness stoically and uncomplainingly, but was shocked and upset by his experience on that occasion. He had hoped that being in hospital would give some respite to my mother from carrying out all the tasks she performed for him at home (again uncomplainingly) but this was not the case. His second admission to hospital came as an emergency in September, when he had breathing difficulties. Again he experienced very poor levels of care and also an astonishing incident. During the night, when my mother wasn't there, he asked for help to sit up to aid his breathing and because he was uncomfortable. Two nurses came to him and told him they were not allowed to help him sit up in case they damaged themselves. As a family we are distressed and angry that he had to experience such appalling care. When my mother talked to the Sister about it in the morning, she merely shrugged her shoulders. My father died in a private nursing home 10 days later. Surely people should be able, at the end of their lives, to expect to be cared for with compassion, engagement and humanity. I feel Neville Hall Hospital sadly failed my father at the end of his life and made an awful situation more distressing for all concerned.

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