"Prostate Cancer Treatment"

About: Freeman Hospital

Anything else?

The start to finish approach of the Prostate Cancer Service sounds too good to be true. The reality, for me, was different from the hospital promoted testimonials. I was reassured to read on the hospital website that prostate conditions ... can be sensitive and very distressing. However, I was not offered or asked if I preferred female staff to undertake intimate examinations which were offered without warning and without any early notification, I later found out my GP was expected to have alerted me to procedures I should expect at the first clinic. My treatment options were explained carefully and I was given as much time as I needed to ask questions. I was directed to other sources of information and agreed that a radical prostatectomy was the best way forward for me. The surgery team worked well together. Everyone appears to have a role and did it very well. The pre-admission notes did not warn me about MRSA and MRSA screening as this was a general screening that most patients have to go through. This should be included in the general pre-admission notes. It would be nice to see patient modesty and patient dignity raised at every point of service delivery. I was disappointed and shamed to find that the follow up clinics are led, once again, by female nurses and nurse specialists. Despite plenty of book knowledge they could not fully understand by personal fears and depression that incontinence and changes to sexual function had caused. They offered inappropriate comments and were dismissive of solutions I had read elsewhere. I think when care involves gender based disease then patients should at least have an option to speak to a nurse or clinician of the same gender if they prefer who may be more able to empathise and also reduce embarrassment for the patient. I am sure female cancer patients would not tolerate male care in the way the hospital expects men to be cared for by female staff. Overall, the surgical and clinical care was very good, The hospital is efficient and clean. There is a lot more room to improve on patient care and sensitivities.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Freeman Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to post your comments about your visit to the Freeman Hospital on NHS Choices. We are pleased to note that the clinical care and the hospital rated highly with you. All of our staff aim to meet the highest standards of patient care at all times so we are very disappointed to read that you feel that the sensitivity and dignity for patients was lacking. With regard to treatment for prostate cancer, we understand that the nature of the condition and investigations can cause some anxiety for patients and we do try to be sensitive to this at all times. Your feedback has been forwarded to the Urology department for discussion with the Prostate Cancer Team. The team does not include a male clinical nurse specialist at this time however we do feel that all of our staff, regardless of their gender have the knowledge, experience, skills and sensitivity to understand and emphasise with patients undergoing investigations and treatment. We sincerely apologise if this was not the case when you visited for your follow-up appointment. As we do not have specific details of your visit, we are unable to look into your concerns in more detail and provide you with a personal response. If you would like us to do this, please contact Ms Pam Yanez, Directorate Manager or Matron Sally Ridley on 0191 233 6161, who will be happy to help with your enquiry.

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