"The doctor was excellent, some good and some bad..."

About: West Middlesex University Hospital

What I liked

I would like to compliment the doctors during my father's stay in Osterley 2 between 21st March and 29th March 2012.

Prior to being transferred to Osterley 2, my father was in Critical Care where care for a patient was superb and communication with the patient and the immediate family was exemplary. However when he moved to Osterley 2 we found communication from the Doctor and nurses rather discouraging for the initial few days. I appreciate comparing Critical Care and a regular ward is incomparable in relation to the level of care however respect and communication to patients and relatives should be demonstrated at all times regardless of the ward. This is where the doctor excelled and demonstrated his brilliant communication skills.

I personally came across the doctor on 24th March when he and the Consultant, also a very articulate man, came to see me and my dad. At that point it was evident that the doctor was keen and willing to assist in every capacity and not just medical related issues. Notwithstanding the fact medical care and knowledge is of primary importance, the doctor was able to demonstrate traits which his senior colleague (Registrar) was unable to express. His willingness to talk to me and my wife (a senior cardiac pharmacist at the Royal Brompton) without any arrogance, not showing any signs of frustration, ability to articulate all the necessary information and his willingness to go the extra mile was very much appreciated. I truly hope these skills are not lost as he progresses up the ladder (SHO, Registrar and a Consultant) as these skills will make him a valuable asset to his colleagues and patients.

I strongly recommend them to highlight this doctor's skills to other members in the same team as a lot of these traits should be displayed where possible especially as it provides comfort and confidence to patients and relatives.

What could be improved

My main concerns revolve around communication with patients and relatives. My dad was initiallty in ITU where communication was fantastic. The argument of 'he was in ITU hence the communication' is wrong because it takes very little to advise the family in a decent manner what the plans are, what treatement will be changed, etc.

Difficult to name and shame a consultant as she is to continue to look after my dad as an outpatient however two siginifant points to raise:

1) She came to see my dad in ITU and advised no filter required however ten minutes later the ITU Dr was saying filtering was required. Poor communication between colleagues which is not good especially when the patient is in critical care.

The attitude of a Dr (I think he was a Reg) and some nurses should be reviewed. I totally understand they pulled from pillar to post given the staff shortages however repsonding to questions rather than blanking a patient / relative is not on and not cleaning up medical waste or food should be reviewed.

Story from NHS Choices

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››