"My overall experience of this hospital is very..."

About: East Surrey Hospital

What I liked

My father was brought into this hospital as an emergency patient direct from Gatwick airport. After his admission we were advised by the consultant on duty that, his condition was critical and he had only a few weeks to live. We discussed with the consultants that we would be grateful if we could have a transfer arranged for him to move to a hospital nearer to where the majority of the family lived. My father lived in the East London all his life, Until three years ago when he moved abroad. However recently he became very unwell and decided to return to this country and be with the family . Unfortunately this was to all change when he arrived @ Gatwick.

Despite our desperate attempt to have our father transferred to be closer to us we are now having to deal with regular two hours journey to be by his bedside to keep a ritual every day.Some days we are stuck in the traffic for hours or caught up with work and not able to reach him until late in the evenings which is upsetting for him and us. We have also got to the hospital to find him left in the bed freezing with no blanket over him or left without any change of the catheter.

The worst part of all this is, when the hospitals income recovery officer came down to see the family. We had gone in to see the consultant but she turned up to discuss my fathers status in this country. despite the fact my father has been told that he is terminal and has only few weeks to live we were advised to prove that he is returning to this country to reside lawfully. My father is a British citizen and we explained to the hospital staffing that we brought him back to this country so that he can be with the family. it is appalling how we are having to deal with the fact our father is dying but we are now having to deal with this too. The care he is receiving is unacceptable, the lack of compassion we received from the income recovery officer is disgusting, we remain to transfer our father to Royal London Hospital.

What could be improved

The hospital could be more compassionate given the circumstances. The income officer claimed she was not aware that my father was terminal when she was informed of his admission.

More support for the family, and possibly in our circumstances to make a hospital transfer possible. We as a family were willing to help with care but can not due to distance.

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Responses

Response from East Surrey Hospital

We are so sorry for the distress you and your family are going through and appreciate that this is a difficult time for you. Your father is being cared for appropriately for his condition in a sideroom on one of our wards and a number of staff have spoken to your family about his treatment. Unfortunately, when people attend the hospital from abroad we do have to verify that they are entitled to free NHS treatment which means establishing proof of residency. We are doing our utmost to resolve this issue quickly.

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