"Far better than I expected"

About: Medway Maritime Hospital

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Having read the adverse reports about the hospital before going in for a replacement knee I was a little apprehensive but I needn't have worried. From the moment I arrived until the time I left I was treated with kindness, efficiency and respect by all the staff on Victory ward. In unbearably hot conditions the staff kept their humour and worked with one or two very difficult patients without losing their self control and humour. I could not fault them in any way. The reservations I have about the hospital is a lack of communication between departments. At the pre-op assessment it was discovered I had MRSA and was therefore asked to report straight to Victory Ward but although I had been told nearly a week beforehand, when I turned up at 7am, I was not expected as my papers were still with POCU and the staff had to wait until 9am before they were sent up. I was ready for discharge on the Tuesday, all blood tests were satisfactory, I was walking well and was just awaiting an X-ray before leaving. Due to a breakdown in communications I was not X-rayed until Wednesday morning so for 24 hours I was nursed, fed and medicated and a bed was wasted. For some reason patients only seemed to be discharged after 5.30pm which is such a waste of manpower and facilities. I would have liked to have spoken to my surgeon at some stage but was not given the opportunity of discussing the operation or indeed thanking him. My discharge notes apparently were not typed up until just before I left and then had to wait for a clinician to sign them off. Surely they could have done in advance by the night staff during a quiet spell and updated and printed off just before discharge. I'm sure there is a reason for this but the logic escapes me. Other than this I was very pleased with my stay and would not hesitate to have further surgery done at the Maritime.

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Response from Suzanne Brooker, Head of Patient Experience, Medway NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for the feedback following your knee replacement.

I was pleased to read that the staff treated you with kindness and respect throughout your stay and that during unbearable hot conditions the staff remained efficient in their duties whilst maintaining a sense of humour.

Your comment relating to the lack of communication between departments has been noted and will be hilighted to the service managers along with your further comments about X -Ray and discharge.

We are currently trialling a new initiative called home before lunch to try and improve on the discharge process and provide a better patient experience.

The intention is based on facilitating a smoother and more efficient pathway for patients wherby all the paperwork for test results, medication and a discharge plan, where relevant, are completed in advance, therefore reducing waiting times and better utilisation of beds.

Thank you for bringing this to our attention.

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Response from Medway Maritime Hospital

Thank you for your feedback about your experience of staying on Victory Ward at Medway Maritime Hospital. We are pleased you found staff to be kind, efficient and respectful and that you could not fault them. We are sorry to hear about the communications issues you raise. We are working harder to improve communication across the organisation but appreciate your comments and will ensure these issues are raised with the relevant teams. Once again, thank you for taking the time to write and we hope you are recovering well. All the best Medway Maritime Hospital Team

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