"Very little. The staff in the ..."

About: Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother Hospital

(as a relative),

What I liked

Very little. The staff in the shop were helpful !! It is a sad reflection the same can not be said about the nursing and domestic staff.

Some of the medical staff were very good, informative with a good bedside manner.

What could be improved

Patient care, from the very basic requirements of personal hygiene to the more involved nursing care of Intravenous therapy, administration and dosage of medication, the understanding and knowledge of conditions they are nursing (if they are unsure then ask or look it up ) are poor and verge dangerous.

Cleanliness of ward areas and side rooms was very poor and despite it being pointed out nothing was ever remedied. There was blood, faeces and rubbish on the floor that remained there for 3 consecutive days even though it was promised that a "blitz" team would be called.

Patients were often missed entirely with food and drink and if the patient was not capable of bringing attention to this they went without. If someone less able was lucky enough to be given food and drink then it would be left uneaten unless a relative was there to help them. The nursing staff never ensured the patients were nourished or hydrated, which in turn often worsened conditions.

Observation and fluid balance charts were not completed, if indeed the observations were ever undertaken.

I felt patient safety was at risk as on numerous occasions patients either fell out of bed, fell trying to undertake using the toilet facilities on their own (they were unable to wait any longer for nursing staff to help them ), fell attempting to get their food which had been left on a bedside table at the end of the bed and worst of all patients in confused states absconded from the ward (totally unnoticed until alerted by other patients, visitors ) to be returned by the police. Surely a risk assessment should be undertaken on how to improve so many areas in this hospital.

Anything else?

I have had the unfortunate (not as unfortunate as the relatives that are the patients ) experience of accompanying or visiting family members on 5 different occasions at QEQM hospital. In the outpatients department we waited 4+ hours to be seen with no notification on how long waiting times were ( I believed this was a requirement of all OPD'S ). If there had been an indication of how late the clinic was running it would have given people the opportunity to get a drink or visit the toilet but as it was everyone was too worried to move in case they missed their appointment which resulted in one poor elderly gentleman becoming incontinent. The Sister showed no empathy for the patients and was infact rude if anyone even dared to question why they were running 4 hours behind schedule. The Consultant became so frustrated with the situation that he came out and wrote on a board (after having his tea ! ) and blamed it on the administration and nursing staff for over booking the clinic.

The inpatient experience in this hospital is no better. This is on 4 different wards and on 4 different occasions. The qualified nursing staff appear uncaring, lazy and totally indifferent to their patients. A lot of time they sit (and on 2 occasions with their feet up on the desk) at the nurses stations chatting, listening to the radio, looking at magazines or holiday brochures. If you dare ask them a question (especially the Sisters ) you are either dismissed or answered in a manner that implies you are an idiot.

On all the wards the care assistants worked very hard whilst the trained staff were sadly lacking, even their knowledge seemed poor. The trained staff only appeared to come to life when a doctor was on the ward.

If I'm to be constructive then I feel there are a lot of areas in this hospital that are not compliant with NHS standards and guidelines. The Director of Nursing should surely look at the standards of nursing care and I feel a risk assessment should be undertaken

Story from NHS Choices

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