"Individuals make the NHS what it is - and is not."

About: Rotherham Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as the patient),

Yesterday I had cause to visit the A & E department of Rotherham General Hospital. I had experienced chest pains and relatives were worried that I was having some kind of heart event and like all hospital visits – and especially emergencies as this was - it was potentially very stressful. I was lucky enough to be placed in the care of a wonderful nurse practitioner in A & E, a Mrs. Suzanne Owens. Her humour, patience and excellent communication skills made the whole thing so much less awful than it might have been. Her willingness to treat me as an intelligent human being, keeping me informed of what was happening, or about to happen, why and with what possible results meant that I felt a) that I was in safe hands but still had some control over the situation b) like an individual rather than a number and c) that I was receiving the best possible care that was available. What was potentially a very frightening episode was made much less so by her wonderful approach. I don’t know whether she has had some special training or whether it was just her individual attitude to the job but I do know that her skills should be passed on to others. I came into contact with other staff during my 5 hour visit and some of them could learn a lot from Mrs. Owens. For example, don’t peer around the curtain without saying a word to the person lying on the trolley, much less come into the bay and collect whatever it is you’re looking for and leave in total silence ignoring any poor soul who happens to be lying there. “Excuse me” is a quite simple thing to say and makes so much difference, as does a smile.

But I wanted to do this report to congratulate Mrs. Owens on being brilliant at her job. She must make such a difference to those patients she comes into contact with. I hope she gets to hear of my comments along with the management of the hospital – using her as some kind of training model could be very productive in developing positive patient/clinician relations.

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Responses

Response from Angela Eyre

Thank you so much for your post and how wonderful to receive such positive feedback regarding a member of our staff. We expect all our staff to be as Ms Owens - Indeed that is why the whole department are participating in the 'Being with Patients'Programme which addresses exactly such issues and we will use your feedback to illustrate that accordingly. Please be assured that your comments have been passed to the Matron for A & E who will ensure Ms Owens is made aware of your feedback and our Deputy Chief Nurse. Thank you once again.
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