"Bad circumstances, but some helpful staff, some..."

About: Darlington Memorial Hospital

What I liked

My grandpa passed away in August this year. He was 92 and had gall stones. He vomited and it went into his lungs and he developed aspiration pneumonia. He was in hospital for 2-3 weeks upto his death.

He was initially admitted to ward 33 where he vomited and got pneumonia. He was transferred to ward 32. The staff on there were very caring and commited to good care. They were also compassionate. He was not well and on antibiotics for a long time and showing no signs of progress. He was delicate and weak and said he was on his last legs, eventhough we kept trying to tell him he was getting better.

He was transferred to ward 44. The doctors were very good, but decided after two and a half weeks after no improvement, his treatment should be stopped because the quality of life was so low. They had given him a good chance and given him antibiotics both my tablet and intravenous and tried him on different types of antibiotics.

Unfortunatly, the nurses on ward 44 were in general, not as nice as the nurses on ward 32. I am not questioning their competancy about being nurses, but they did not show as much compassion as they did on ward 32. When my mother asked them for things they were grumpy and unhelpful, even a little sarcastic. A couple of the nurses on ward 44 however, did show compassion and I thanked them, but my mother had such a bad view of the ward that she would not do so. She returned to ward 32 to thank the staff and they hugged her and all showed their sympathy and were extremely compassionate. I wonder why ward 44 was so different.

What could be improved

I have nothing I can criticise about the medical care, however I would like ward 44 to be a bit more caring and more considerate to visitors who are dealing with a relative who is dying. My mother was talking about my grandpa with one of the sisters on ward 44, and she was concentrating on putting stickers on a chart and not really listening to her. It was very rude. However some of the nurses on ward 44 were caring so I do not mean it about all the staff on that ward.

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Response from Darlington Memorial Hospital

Dear Anonymous,

Thank you for providing feedback on your Grandpa's admission to Darlington Memorial Hospital earlier this year. May I take this opportunity to offer condolences to you and your family.

Whilst I am pleased that you are happy with the care given to your Grandpa on Ward 32, I am sorry to hear that your family then had a poor experience on Ward 44.

We would welcome the opportunity to discuss your concerns with you or your mother. If you feel this would be useful please contact the Trust’s Patient Experience Team on 0800 7835774. If you would prefer to contact us by e-mail, our address is complaints@cddft.nhs.uk

Alternatively, you can write to us at the following address: -

Patient Experience Team

Darlington Memorial Hospital

Hollyhurst Road


County Durham


If you do decide to contact us, please make us aware that you have left comments on the NHS Choices website.

The Trust is grateful for all feedback, positive or negative, as it means we can better understand what is important to our patients and their families.

Thank you for leaving your comments on NHS Choices.

Patient Experience Team

Tel: 0800 7835774

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