"Sent home without medication from Rotherham District General"

About: Rotherham Hospital

(as the patient),

I am the sister of a patient who has many difficulties - cerebral palsy, chronic lung and breathing problems, angina, and a huge hernia which cannot be operated on because of chest and heart conditions. On his last stay at the Rotherham District General Hospital, he was informed on a Tuesday that he could go home the following day. Unfortunately, I was away for the day so could not collect him from hospital, but was able to check on him that evening. So it was agreed that transport would be provided on the Wednesday and he arrived home at around 4pm and I checked in on him at 7pm. However, the next day (Thursday), my brother informed me that he had no medication at all (having taken his home stock with him during his stay at the hospital).

I do feel that he should not have been sent home without his medication, especially in view of his communication difficulties. It meant myself having to return to the hospital for his medication, and I also have COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), so am not in the best of health.

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Response from Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for taking the time to post your opinion on the website and we are really sorry that your sister encountered this problem.

We do try, whenever possible, to arrange for patients' drugs to be ready for the day of their discharge. However, there are unfortunately some occasions when, for a number of reasons, we do not manage this.

If a patient is taken home by hospital transport before their drugs are ready, we then arrange for the drugs to be sent out to the patients' home address the same day by hospital car. Obviously, this did not happen in your sisters case and we can only apologise for the inconvenience it caused.

If patients travel using their own transport and leave without their drugs, the hospital delivery service would not be made available for obvious resource implications.

We are reviewing the entire discharge service at the Trust and hope to see improvements in the near future.

If you would like to discuss your particular experience in more detail, please do not hesitate to contact Ian Cawthorne, Chief Pharmacist on 304137.