"A and E- excellent and compasionate, Ward- abysmyl..."

About: Royal Derby Hospital

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I was admitted to the A and E department following a suicide attempt. The Paramedics and A and E staff were compassionate, caring and tried to help me even though I was there at a busy time, and because of self injury. For this I was so grateful. It made my unbearable misery lessen a little, which was quite something. I then went to the MAU for a short time- also this was a positive experience, even though I was feeling terrible. The staff were obviously very busy indeed, but were kind, civil and helped with things like going to the toilet, cleaning me up, changing drip bags etc. They did their jobs well. Then I was moved to a general medical ward which was terrifying and unpleasant. Due to my physical and mental condition, I was unable to take myself to the toilet, wash, eat, speak and move without help. As my mobility improved, (I was very confused), I tried to take myself to the toilet or to find a vessel to be sick into, as attempting to get help to do these things was not forthcoming. As a result, I ended up wandering through the hospital, trying desperately to find help from anyone, a nurse, Dr, someone... I was shouted at, very crossly indeed, several times by one nurse in particular, and not helped, but told off for being covered in vomit/ urine. I was making the place dirty. I was grudgingly helped after wandering through the corridors, covered in vomit, several times, and eventually presented with a tiny cardboard kidney dish, out of my reach, bars up on the bed. I was not helped to get to the loo, resulting in many unpleasant accidents. Sorry to be so open about all this, but you need to know how it actually was. It was a nightmare. At a couple of points I was hallucinating and imagining awful things, no one comforted me- I was told off, really aggressively. The staff on the ward were no doubt very, very busy, and they made this very, very clear; that I was a pest, an irritation, a danger to other patients safety and their own convenience was severely put out. I wanted to discharge myself as they were so hostile towards me, but this was met with derision and more tellings off. I was also amazed that the nurses had been able to become registered professionals, as some of them seemed to actively hate me and saw me as the patient from hell- the reality is I was desperately frightened, confused, sick, incontinent and had just attempted suicide. I left the hospital, wanting to try again, and adamant that this hospital's general medical ward is never going to treat me again, ever. I'd rather die. Dying alone and sick and in pain would be preferable to dying in a place where you are yelled at if you move, told off if you wet yourself, not helped to the toilet, left covered in vomit and only provided with a fresh gown if you beg for one. This sounds unbelievable- it's all true. Sorry.

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Response from Royal Derby Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback, and for your positive comments about our A&E staff. Some of the experience you had is clearly not what we would expect - for that we would like to apologise. We would very much like to encourage you to come and talk with a member of our PALs team so that they can look into some of the points you have made and gather a few more details. Listening to patients about their experiences is the only way that we can improve. Please call PALs on Freephone 0800 7837691. J.Roberts, Communications

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