"My mothers care..."

About: Queen Elizabeth University Hospital Glasgow / Joint conditions

(as a relative),

My mother was admitted to 6B. The experience is one in which I will never forget for all the wrong reasons. My elderly mother was admitted due to sepsis, it was made clear when we got onto the ward that antibiotics would commence and in time she would begin to show signs of improvement. At this stage I made it clear to the nursing staff that my mother's mobility had been poor due to the onset of the sepsis and my concerns were that she would fall. On the first couple of visits I found my mother to be delirious and not quite herself - I put this down to the sepsis, until I realised that my mother was receiving medication that was not prescribed for her including tramadol that she was advised not to have by her GP. On another occasion I witnessed a nurse perform a drug error in the room, when questioned she denied this. The nursing staff on 6B seemed extremely overrun and I feel they did not have much time for my mother. I came across bad attitudes, rude manners and lack of basic nursing in some of the staff we came into contact with! Often my mothers aid buzzer was out of her reach and not accessible.  Staff on the ward encouraged my mother's mobility and due to the lack of equipment agreed that her walking stick was adequate.  my mother could not stand for more than 10 seconds without needing to be seated again. Subsequently my mother had two falls the second fall which broke her shoulder after which my mother was bed-bound.  It saddens me to explain that her fall was her attempt in making her way to the bathroom as she had soiled herself due to the lack of response to her aid buzzer. On arrival to the ward this night the staff became very defensive and rude - one nurse in particular stating "these things happen". My mother's falls mat had been folded up and put under her beside cabinet as it was "broken".   After this it was a challenge daily to explain to the staff that they could not lift her or move her the way they had been due to the broken shoulder.   My mum was terrified to be moved due to the pain and I had to ask daily for her sling to be put on. This breaks my heart to relive these memories again as my mother was palliative care. At no point did I feel compassion, care or commitment from any of the nursing staff. During the 8 weeks there was at times points that I am grateful for however the negative outweighs this. Sadly, my mother passed 2 weeks after being discharged.  


Response from Morag Gardner, Chief Nurse, South Sector, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

Dear 39SWO

First of all, I would like to offer my heartfelt sympathies to you and your family. I can only imagine what you must be going through in dealing with the loss of your Mother.

I am very disappointed to read about your Mother’s experience, please accept my apologies. As you have raised a number of concerns relating to your Mother’s care I would like the opportunity to investigate this more fully and respond to your concerns.

If you feel able, I would like to meet with you to discuss your concerns. I would be grateful if you could contact, my colleague, Denise Wilkinson, Lead Nurse, (Denise.Wilkinson@ggc.scot.nhs.uk) with your details. This will allow us to investigate your concerns, learn from your experiences and provide you with further detail.

Kind Regards

Morag Gardner

Chief Nurse – South Sector

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