"Excellent medically, less in terms of available..."

About: Frenchay Hospital

What I liked

Despite the norovirus that was sweeping through the hospital on 14 December, my 85 husband received surgery as a one night in patient for an aggressive skin cancer tumour. During a hour wait during which we did not know if the operation could proceed due to lack of beds, we were treated with great kindness and consideration by all the staff.

What could be improved

His operation and discharge proceeded equally smoothly, and the only criticism I have is that due to his age and residual effects of the anaesthetic, he did not receive and/.or did not take in the discharge information necessary for me to deal with his aftercare. He was provided with a handover of care letter detailing, in completely baffling code, three follow up appointments with various people. There was no contact telephone number supplied. After working my way through half the hospital switchboard I managed to get a translation of these via the plastic outpatients clinic. It would be helpful to the carer especially in cases such as my husband, if there were an advice line available.

Anything else?

Thanks to all the nurses and staff in Ward 5 and Ward 203.

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Responses

Response from Frenchay Hospital

Dear Mrs Forest – thank you for taking the time and trouble to post your positive comments about the service your husband received from the Plastic Surgery Service at Frenchay Hospital. I am please to note that he received excellent medical care and that you were well looked after and kept informed about whether his operation could proceed.

I regret that your husband was not provided with all the information he required on his discharge in a way that meant he was fully able to comprehend this, and that staff did not take the time and trouble to check on his understanding. As you point out it is clearly important to make sure all patients, or their carers, fully understand the documentation supplied, or that a valid telephone number is quoted to allow questions to be asked. I regret the inconvenience you suffered as a result, and apologise for any anxiety or frustration that resulted.

All your comments have been shared with the staff involved and I have asked that the discharge summary sheet is amended to carry the correct direct line telephone information.

Thank you again for your feedback. I hope that you husband makes a speedy recovery from his procedure.

Kind Regards – Steve Sykes

Advice and Complaints Team Manager

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