"Two very different experiences of being an inpatient"
About: Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust / Inpatient mental health care Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust Inpatient mental health care PR5 6AW
Posted by Aggrieved from Fleetwood (as ),
I was a patient in Ormskirk last year. I feel this is exactly how a mental health unit should be run. The staff were very caring, talked to me every day, asked me how I was feeling. The medication was provided in a small room with just the nurse and a support worker, ensuring total patient confidentiality. My needs were assessed as an individual and were met. All the patients ate their meals on the ward and the food was delicious. In 27 days I was feeling much better and I was discharged.
I was also admitted to Stirling Ward earlier this year. This was a terrible experience. I found the areas of the ward I saw filthy, my medication was given in front of all the other patients on the ward in the corridor ensuring zero patient confidentiality. I found the staff who were involved in my care, in the main, controlling and demanding.
Patients of all 4 wards (88 patients in total) had to eat in the canteen, queuing up which made me feel like an animal. Sometimes the queue could be 50 people. Some patients, like me, were too nervous to go down to the canteen and asked to eat on the ward. Some staff agreed to this, saying that they had a duty of care and they would rather we ate something, but then these staff and patients were reprimanded (the patients were reprimanded publicly in the patient's lounge by staff) and those patients stayed on their beds at mealtimes and ate nothing. How can this been deemed care? Vulnerable adults were not given an opportunity to eat in a way that they felt comfortable which I found appalling.
I saw my named nurse or another nurse on a one-to-one basis only a small handful of times, certainly not the daily occurrence that I experienced at Ormskirk. I was a patient for just under 2 months, and I don't feel any better now than I did before I was admitted. One member of staff at Ormskirk said that they were there to help me get better, so that I could more easily cope with home life. A member of staff at Parkwood said that they were not here to make me feel better, rather to detain me. For me, that sums it up perfectly.