"Excellent level of care from all areas..."

About: Darlington Memorial Hospital

What I liked

I am writing to thank all the staff on Ward 11 for such wonderful nursing care, from getting to the day surgery unit, to anaesthetic, to recovery, to the ward, following partial thyroidectomy surgery. I had excellent care throughout and believe that members of staff do not have enough praise for the work they do do. It was obvious that nursing staff were extremely busy, however this did not impact on the level of care I received whilst in hospital.

Overall a fantastic level of care, a clean ward, explanations were excellent and nursing care exlemplary. Thank-you for making my short stay in hospital one that wasn’t as traumatic as I was visualising (I really don’t like hospitals due to bad experiences as a child). The majority of members of staff helped to calm nerves and settle you before the operation and the anaesthetic team were simply fantastic, no awful canula bruising/uncomfortableness etc. Many, many thanks, you deserve to be told what a grand job you are doing as compliments are usually not documentednor forwarded!!

What could be improved

There were only a couple of extremely minor incidences that could have improved upon. Some members of staff hardly spoke & did not warn you when taking general observations, a simple, “I’m just going to take your blood pressure & temperature” would have been fine as when in and out of sleep you don’t want a conversation, but at times, having your arm taken ready for blood pressure readings was a bit startling,

Also, during the night, another patient was being ill, which could not be helped, at the time all of the lights were off and most people on the ward in & out of sleep, but the lights were switched on without warning which again was a bit startling in the middle of the night/ early hours of the morning, again just a quiet “The lights are just going on” gives warning to those that are dozing & doesn’t wake any others up, nor startle. At one point another patient visibly jumped when the lights were switched on!

These are extremely minor issues, but I believe would improve patient experience whilst in hospital. It is important to note & bear in mind that patients can hear general discussions out on the corridor as well and the domestic staff should be a bit more cautious when talking between themselves about a patients demeanour, people are ill & are bound to be a bit particular & grumpy, but talking about them in the hallway doesn’t really help (an example “that woman said to me urgh I’m getting fed up of soup, well what the hell am I supposed to give her, I didn’t know she has an allergy to milk!).

The ward round with the surgeon & group of doctors can be disconcerting & a little off putting, A group of professionals staring at you, hardly speaking as though looking at a goldfish in a bowl, a few words about your operation in full view & no privacy from other patients in the same ward. They seemed to float in with an air of superiority & vanished afterwards. Although my conultant wasn't there & was much more discreet & appraochable.

Anything else?

I would like staff members to be recognised for all of the hard work they put into their job, it is clear that for some, it is not simply a job, but a vocation and they do deserve some recognition and praise for the work they do under such pressurised circumstances. The nurses on that ward never stopped, yet never grumbled or complained.ComplaintsSurgeryThyroid surgeryCleanlinessPatient careAnaestheticsDay SurgeryNursing staffBruisingHypertensionNervousTemperatureAllergiesNoise levelsOpening hoursCorridorsHallwaysImmunologyPrivacyDoctorsSurgeons

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Response from Darlington Memorial Hospital

Thank you for providing feedback from your visit to Darlington Memorial Hospital in 2011. Unfortunately, at the time you shared your feedback, we were unable to respond. If you would like to discuss your previous comments please contact us. The Trust is grateful for all feedback, positive or negative, as it means we can better understand what is important to our patients. Thank you for leaving your comments on NHS Choices. Patient Experience Team County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust Tel: 0800 7835774

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