"Pretty bad to be honest."

About: Queen Alexandra Hospital

What I liked

I am commenting on behalf of my father who has been admitted after a bad fall.

I liked that my father was in the right place for his condition. The ward was clean (considering it was in the old part of the hospital and has not been upgraded in any way).

What could be improved

The communication between the staff at 'handover'. My dad's care has been patchy at best. There had been no explanation as to why my Dad had been taken off a fluid drip - yet he is dehydrated and the staff do not have the time to sit and spoon feed him thickened water. My father cannot speak or communicate and has the worst mental conditions that afflict the elderly along with dysphagia (inability to swallow), so he is totally dependent on their care. My daughter and I have taken to visiting and feed him everyday as we do not trust the staff to do this properly. He is supposed to be on a completely pureed diet, yet they were giving him lumpy stuff that would have choked him had we not pointed it out on more than one occasion. His pain control is not great either, he also has gallstones that play up all the time, yet they seem to be decreasing his pain medication. They ignore his cries of pain because they seem to think it is just a 'mental' thing - yet my Dad was doubled up and his face contorted. I do not feel they keep an adequate eye on him or manage his pain or diet properly. He needs a good bath, but as yet I have seen no evidence of that happening even though he has been in for 8 days.

Anything else?

The food is diabolical. They did away with the in-house kitchens when the hospital was refitted/upgraded. Why????? Now the rubbish the patients are expected to eat comes from Wales everyday, an expensive drive for anyone never mind a lorry or fleet of lorries. If it was done on a cost cutting exercise they have seriously underestimated what they have done. My Dad wouldn't even touch the muck he was served yesterday - I tried some and I have to agree it was terrible! I thought good food is part of the recovery process, and when the kitchens were active in cooking patient food it was brilliant and more 'home cooked'. We are in Hampshire, a rich farming county, so what is the excuse for having pre-packaged flavourless smush being sent on a 3-400 mile round trip from Wales everyday? Could someone explain the logic behind this decision please.

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Responses

Response from Queen Alexandra Hospital

Thank you for your feedback and I apologise for the delay in posting a response. I raised and discussed with our group of senior nurses your key concerns about handover communication, pain control and food and fluids. We acknowledge that some of these issues are areas we need to improve. To support that from a nuring perspective, we are currently redesigning our nursing documents to assist. All of our Heads of Nursing and senior nursing team are undertaking focussed ward based work which includes a review of the handover systems.

I was disappointed to hear that the food did not meet your father's needs. The Cook chill system is a system adopted by 35% of hospital trusts nationwide and is a system which ensures that the food provided retains its nutritional value. We aim to ensure that patients have food that they like and there is an opportunity for a special request to be made to the ward. I have reminded staff that this option should be provided when required.

If you would like to discuss this further please do contact the PALS Office:

Telephone us on: Freephone 0800 917 6039

Email us on: PALS@porthosp.nhs.uk

Write to us at:

Freepost RSGB-CJUS-YAXK

Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust

Patient Liasion and Advice Service

Health Information Office

Queen Alexandra Hospital

Southwick Hill Road

Cosham, Portsmouth

PO6 3LY

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