"Varied standards of care and cleanliness at Barnsley hospital"

About: Barnsley Hospital

(as the patient),

I was admitted to Barnsley hospital recently with a severe asthma attack. I was referred directly to admission ward 18 by my GP.

Admission was quick and I saw a doctor quite quickly which was good, however that is where the positive experience ended. I have arranged the following comments in bullet points in order to be as concise as possible:-

- admission 2pm, saw doctor around 4pm who said he didn't think it was asthma and prescribed antibiotics

- no contact with anyone until I asked sister at 6pm what was happening and was advised that they were still waiting for a bed

- by 8.30 / 9 pm I had been given no update or had any contact with any nursing staff, I was extremely tired and getting agitated because my breathing hadn't improved and my inhalers weren't helping. When I asked the charge nurse on the evening shift if he knew what was going on, his response was "I’ve been busy since I came on shift, I've got somebody next door that's really poorly and you seem well enough to be able to walk to the toilet". He was very dismissive and made me feel that I was being a nuisance and had no right to be there. In fact, the patient next to me made a comment about him being rude. I'd been there for 6 hours sat in a chair and hadn't even asked for a glass of water, because I didn't want to make a fuss!

- at this point I was ready to leave and go home when my mum phoned the ward for an update. She persuaded me to stay and get sorted, because this was my second admission in 5 months, having never been in hospital with asthma before. When she talked to the charge nurse he told her that there was a bed for me on ward 25. I wasn't asking for anything other than some information, I could see they were busy but as they were passing someone could have told me this without holding them up.

My experience on ward 25 was much better, certainly medically speaking

- worrying issues of cleanliness, namely the sink next to my bed was back flowing with dirty water during my entire stay

-my chair had a big stain on it, which I assumed by the colour and smell of it was urine or worse. The cleaner said it was too late to try and clean it and brought me like a big nappy to sit on!

- no rubbish bin, only a medical waste one, so rubbish was left on lockers until a cleaner came around

- shared toilets: lots of elderly people on the ward and toilet floors were splashed with urine. After a couple of days I avoided one of them because it was so sticky my slippers were sticking to the floor

- mirrors above sinks in same toilets were filthy, I wrote my initials on one and it was still there 5 days later when I went home

I am not blaming anyone for the poor cleanliness, simply voicing my concerns. Why bother with all the hygiene gel when the toilets are scruffy?

On a positive note the food choice and quality was very good, also the majority of the nursing staff that I cam into contact with.

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