"I was admitted as an emergency ..."

About: Maidstone District General Hospital

(as the patient),

What I liked

I was admitted as an emergency cardiac / heart attack and after spending the first night in the admissions unit was transferred to the Cardiac Care Unit. This was my 1st hospital visit (I'm 53) since an appendectomy at age 10. I found the staff caring, professional and attentive balancing the formal medical care with an informal interest in a complete stranger who was under their charge. Overall the ward staff had better people skills than the higher ups, but I suppose that is normal?

What was most important to me was I felt safe, following a very painful (but apparently mild) heart attack, I had reached a place of safety and would live.

What could be improved

The broader knowledge of the registrar, doctor etc people could be improved. In an age of instant medical information access, I am concerned that I had to go to the web to get information that my human medical experts weren't able or willing to give me. Something as simple as following a heart attack to expect a longer warm up period when exercising. When to start weight bearing exercise - one advice was 6 weeks, another was an insistence of 6 months! And perhaps a bit more about what went wrong, it was only when I spoke to the rehab person that I was shown the diagram of the constrictions within my arteries.

I guess there is an assumption that patients are either a bit dim and won't understand or will come to "conclusions", in my case I want to know as much as possible.

Anything else?

With a follow up visit, I was invited to lay on the bench, curtains drawn round, after the examination the registrar went back to his desk and I was sort of abandoned. Very peculiar. Basically people skills.

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Response from Maidstone District General Hospital

We would like to thank you for taking the time to comment on your experiences at the Maidstone Hospital. All comments are passed on directly to the appropriate manager of the department concerned for them to learn from and improve their services. If you require any assistance in the future, please do not hesitate to contact mtwpals@nhs.net or call them on 01622 224960. Kind regards Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust (SG)

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