"My recent experiences of the NHS in Devon"

About: Devon Access and Referral Team (DART) Devon Partnership NHS Trust / Inpatient mental health care North Devon District Hospital Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital (Wonford)

(as the patient),

I have had two wonderful and immensely helpful experiences of the NHS recently which I’d like to share. They are at different ends of the caring spectrum but both were of the highest quality and I want to register my deep appreciation of them both.

The first concerned booking an appointment through the scheme whereby the GP gives the patient a code and a number and you have to ring in. I had to ring in to make two appointments at The Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, Wonford. The backdrop to this is that currently my life involves commuting between Penzance, Exeter and Barnstaple and as I work in the caring professions myself, its often the case of the cobbler's kids being without shoes, so for me to receive care back is much valued.

I was afraid i would not be seen as a helpful patient as there were only a few slots each week when I could get to the hospital. A lady who I hope I remember accurately as Debbie (she was on duty on 28th May in the afternoon) was inordinately patient, kind, humorous and efficient in finding me appointments I could manage.

Secondly, my husband has been an inpatient at Barnstaple Hospital. He has now been moved to a home, but I just wanted to say how truly wonderful his care has been. I was included in decision-making at every point along the way, and the staff were just amazing. I had a two hundred mile drive each week to visit him and care for him in order to keep his spirits up, and the staff managed to support us both during a sad and difficult time so well.

One hears complaints about the NHS, but I want to say how exceptional I have found the quality of care. I owe them all a debt of gratitude.

So thank you wonderful team at Meadow View, North Devon District Hospital, The Psychiatrist, Dr. Kumar, the indefatigable Thea Bull Senior Nurse Manager who co-ordinated the care and staffing, the Ward Manager and administrative staff and the wonderful team of nurses, so skilled, patient, humorous and when needed firm in a kind and respectful way.

The care was beyond the call of duty, acts of kindness that alleviated his boredom and anxiety as well as top of the range skilled nursing care. Thank you all so very much.

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Response from Gemma Smith, Project Support Manager, DART, NHS Devon

Dear ‘Ocean79’,

Thank you very much for your wonderful comments about the experience you had with DART. It’s very kind of you to take the time to let us know that you are happy with the service. It’s always great to hear when we’re doing a good job and I’m glad that your health care has been provided so brilliantly, I will gladly pass on your kind comments on to the booking team member that you spoke to.

Many thanks

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Response from Devon Partnership NHS Trust

Many thanks for taking the time to share your positive experience of our service - it means a great deal to us. We have brought it to the attention of the staff concerned.

Thank you once again. Devon Partnership NHS Trust

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