"very good."

About: Kettering General Hospital

What I liked

how caring everyone was, from the reception to the nurse and consultant. I was fearful of walking and falling and came in a wheelchair. I was given impressive pain relief and exercises, plus a follow up visit in 3 months. I was upset that my lifestyle seemed so limited by arthritis and the nurse really put herself out by going down to physio dept personally and asking a physio to come upstairs to assess me for 2 crutches. This physio also spent a whole seession with me in a private room showing me how I could start to walk again safely. How I could start exercises at my own pace, and she set goals for me that were achievable and clear to understand. I was crying before she saw me and now after 2 weeks I have been out to a coffee morning and tomorrow I am going to a harvest supper in our village.

I still have pain and I await an MRI but thanks to the care of staff here I feel less trapped in my house, and I have started to shop for groceries on line as I cant do a lot of walking anymore. I also came to the hospital in september via nene doc with the pain, and was admitted overnight. The surgical ward was busy and I was the last admission of 4 in a couple of hours after midnight. I was treated with every respect and care on that ward, and reassured I did not in fact need surgery ( nene doc had been concerned it had to be checked out.) that ward wrote to my gp who then referred me again to orthopods.

What could be improved

I had to use the new patient transport service which was excellent for people who cannot walk long distances from the hospital car park. or from their home.It was poorly advertised, and difficult to google. You get nhs docs about it as a service they buy, you get nhs and newspaper docs to tell you why the service changed and when it started. You get a load of stuff about the company that run the service eg their past history the company accounts and the head office.You are in despair at this point as you cannot just get a link with a friendly message and telephone number for some one who is unwell and alone as I was..it took far too long and they need to get the web master to get the website and local contact number right up there at the top of page one. It should also emphasise this is a free service paid for and contracted by the nhs. I did wonder if it is because the nhs pay that they hide the access away!

The previous non emergency patient transfer service had a waiting room on the ground floor of the hospital,you could be wheeled to it when your hospital out patient or in patient service finished by a porter.. It was very comfortable with room for the wheelchairs and chairs to transfer on if you wished. There was a receptionist who contacted the ambulance service for you,and light refreshments available. I do not mind waiting for a pick up and with no carer was trapped in the chair waiting and no way to get a drink or get to a toilet. It would be better if the waiting room could be available again.

Anything else?

The staff at the hospital need to be more proactive about promoting the much needed non emergency transfer service. Yes its not longer EMAS and yes it does have criteria for users with questions asked by them, but if someone genuinely cannot walk far its a brilliant pick up and collection service from your house and the highly trained staff so very helpful and kind. There should be posters on the walls about it and no that is not "marketing for profit" its marketing for patients needs and there is a big distinction. Dont frighten people into you may not get the service so they dont even try ...instead show it as a simple series of steps to follow. and give out the contact number so patients can ring them direct. I am sure many people do not know about this wonderful service as there is nothing to see on the walls at the hospital. I sat in out patients Xray ..an obvious place with many seats and a lot of walls..nothing. I sat in orthopods out patients again nothing on the walls. Why ever not?? is there a bad feeling with the staff that emas lost the contract?? it does make you wonder ....I was given a telephone number to ring eventually but not a leaflet..why no leaflets they also should be at all points required in the hospital.?

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