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I have had 3 admissions to 3/4 wards on the Radbourne Unit (wards 33, 35 & 36). My first admission was to ward 36 and I do not have good memories of the ward although the doctor on the ward at the time was lovely. I made an official complaint about a particular member of staff's treatment towards me following discharge and I didn't even receive an acknowledgement. My second admission to ward 35 was initially positive. They did their job and kept me safe but I found the ward in itself very volatile and of an unpredictable nature. The staff were good although there was so much going on I found it difficult to be able to speak to the same person. I didn't get on with my named nurse at all and the process of asking to change was difficult & the staff became obstinate & it did affect my care. I didn't get to change nurse and so it made talking to staff awkward. Some of the HCAs on the ward were lovely however and actually bothered to make time for me. The experience on this ward was very much a case of us versus them, as in patients versus staff, which only heightened the divide. I also found on this ward they are more likely to pull alarms which only panic patients and Control & Restraint is used too much. I told them I was not ready for discharge, but they discharged me anyway only to overdose and be sectioned the following day. My third admission to ward 33 (of the same year) was a complete different ball game. The team of staff is large enough to rotate evenly but small enough to build relationships with various staff. I found this ward much calmer than the others. The staff are more likely to talk things through with you than pull the alarm and as a result Control & Restraint is used minimally. There was only a minority of staff who I felt were there for the pay at the end of the month; I'd say 16/20 staff were actually there for the care.There are 2 members of senior management who do need to learn compassion & listening skills. This ward would not operate as efficiently as it does without its fantastic Nursing Assistants/HCAs who don't receive the credit they deserve. Often, if patients just didn't want to be on their own, or felt unsafe being on their own but didn't want to or weren't ready to talk, the NAs will freely give you their time, patience and a smile. One in particular made such a difference to my admission. With the staff on the whole, nothing was ever too much trouble, if they didn't have time there and then they would allocate a time for you or ask if you'd prefer to speak to Nurse X. I never once felt they didn't listen to me, I felt most of them (nurses and NA's) looked and spoke to me as a person and not a diagnosis and spoke to me without judgement of things I'd done or experienced. They boosted my confidence, encouraged positive thinking & gave me something no one had ever done before: time. Staff from 35 & 36 could really do with a week with 33 staff. All bar one, the night staff are second to none.

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Response from Newholme Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to provide your feedback. We are sorry if we have previously not responded to your comments in a timely manner– we now monitor this site weekly. We have undertaken a considerable amount of work over recent months within the unit and its environment . We have reduced the bed numbers on each ward, increased the staff to patient ratio and opened up a new ward which has increased the total number of beds available by 5. The Trust is working towards adopting a ‘no force’ approach to patient interventions, which includes developing compassion focussed therapeutic interventions, the removal of seclusion and developing the culture of our workforce through co-production. There is an action plan for change in operation and safe wards programme of meaningful interventions has been adopted on each of our wards. We will feedback your positive comments to the ward teams also. If you still wish us to look into your concerns, especially the formal complaint, if you still havent recieved a response, please contact the Patient Experience team on 01332 623718 patientexperience@debyshcft.nhs.uk Or in writing to Patient Experience Team Derbyshire Health Care NHS Foundation Trust Bramble House Kingsway Site Kingsway Derby DE22 3LZ

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