"Mum's mixed experience in St Helier"

About: St Helier Hospital / General medicine

(as a relative),

Mum was taken to A&E on a Saturday with severe dehydration. After some blood tests they decided to keep her in. She was taken to SAU ward where the staff were very good. She has dementia, type 2 diabetes and most recently recovered from a ruptured gallbladder.

On the Sunday they decided to move her to Ward C4. At 10.30pm I alerted the nurse to the cannula that had come out unfortunately. So her vital glucose fluids were not going in. The nurse just looked at me with apathy and told me that the Dr had to do that. I assumed she meant perhaps the following morning at the latest? !

I came back at 3pm on the Monday. I had called in the morning to ask about the cannula and fluids (WHY AM I HAVING TO DO THIS BY THE WAY? ). I was falsely assured that it would be reinserted when the doctors did their rounds.

So 3pm, no one has seen my mum, no one has escalated the cannula being out and bag of fluid just sitting there from 10pm previous night. I ask the nurse why the cannula is still out and was told that the doctors suggested that. When I asked which one I was told to ask the nurse at the desk, which I did

To cut a long story short, after I complained, the Site Manager, repeat Site Manager comes to deal with my complaint. Excellent person indeed. The site manager proceeded to reinsert the cannula and get the fluids going again.

On Tuesday the Bag of fluid runs out. No Dr has seen my mum. I am forced to go to PALS to complain. Why should I need to do this? A severely dehydrated, diabetic patient with dementia has not been seen in 48 hrs. Disgusting!

As for Aramark, do they know some patients have dementia? When you say do you want breakfast and the patient says no, they just cruise on by with not a care in the world.

The CEO has a video out saying care and attention must be given to patients and relatives? I felt that no one I saw cared about my mum, no one cared about me either.

If I had not intervened, I don't know how long my mum would have been left in that ward. 3-4 days? When the Dr eventually came they claimed they did not know one of their patients was in this ward. Great. Just Great. So I would like to know who is responsible for this sub standard care? The nurses, the Dr's, the Site Manager, who?

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


Response from Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust

Thank you for taking the time to let us have feedback about the care your mum received at St Helier Hospital.

As you can imagine, I am concerned to hear of the issues you have raised and would ask you to contact our patient advice and liaison service (PALS) so that they can look into them for me.

Being in hospital is a worrying enough time for patients and their families, without having to raise concerns like this.

From the points you have raised, we fell well short of the high standards I would expect and I am keen for us to address them for you. This would include understanding what went wrong and making sure staff who were responsible can be informed and learn appropriate lessons.

Contact details for our PALS team, including email and telephone, can be found on our website: www.epsom-sthelier.nhs.uk/PALS.

Once again, thank you for your message, including the positive feedback about our surgical assessment unit (SAU) and our site manager. However, I am sorry that your overall experience wasn't positive, but I hope we can address that for you.

Pippa Hart

Director of Nursing