"ladywell unit staff ignore mental health patients and family members"

About: Inpatient mental health care (Lewisham)

(as a relative),

My sister has been recently detained at the Ladywell unit at Lewisham Hospital, South East London.

I went to visit her for the first time on the triage ward to find she is limping, when walking. I ask her why is she limping when yesterday you weren't. Her reply was the staff had done it when injecting her with medication. I then ask her does she have a key worker that she feels she can talk to. Her reply was that the staff ignore her when she asks a question.

I decided to check for myself and found an office, with a male and female working in it, on the triage ward. I approached the window and neither one of them acknowledge me by keeping their heads at their computer screens. After a minute, the women looked up and asked me what I wanted. I asked her is there anybody available for my sister to talk to or ask any questions?

Her response was, the patient can talk to anybody and she said she had spoken to the patient herself about having a key worker. This women talking to me didn't seem very approachable or caring. She never greeted me with a smile or said hello. She slid her swivel chair to the door and didn't bother getting up. My reply to her is maybe the patients shouldn't be told on the day they are admitted as they are quickly injected with drugs after arriving. She then told me to have a look on the board to find out the patient's key worker.

The staff I met in my opinion were ignorant and rude. They appear disinterested in their jobs. Filling in paper work and administering medication seems to leave little room for patient welfare. It's like going back in time.

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Responses

Response from Bill Berry, Patient Experience Manager, Patient Public Involvement Team Organisation and Community Directorate, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Angels2601

Thank you for your post regarding the Ladywell Unit. I have spoken with the Service Manager for that particular Unit and asked him to respond to the issues you have highlighted in your post. I am waiting for his response and will post it as soon as I have it.

if in the mean time you wanted to discuss it with me you can call me on 020 32281668 or on my mobile 077911522641 or email me at Bill.berry@slam.nhs.uk

Kind regards

Bill Berry

Service Improvement Manager

South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

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Response from Bill Berry, Patient Experience Manager, Patient Public Involvement Team Organisation and Community Directorate, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Dear Angels2601

As a trust committed to encouraging feedback regarding our services and learning from that feedback we regret you feel that you had a negative experience whilst visiting your sister on Lewisham Triage Ward.

As an organisation all patient records are computerised, so staff do have to spend time putting information onto computers. However, we would expect staff in these circumstances to have focused their full attention on you and we are sorry you feel that this did not happen.

The Triage staff team pride itself on having the highest standards of care for their service users and their families. When your comments were shared with the team all were disappointed that you had this experience.

If you wish to discuss this further please contact Tina Irwin, Triage Ward manager on 02032280219, or at Triage Ward, Ladywell Unit, University Hospital Lewisham, Lewisham High Street, London, SE13 6LW.

Tina Irwin

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