"Many of the staff were very compassionate, ..."

About: Royal Free Hospital

(as a relative),

What I liked

Many of the staff were very compassionate, caring and highly skilled in the care they gave.

What could be improved

Other staff seemed resigned, to leaving patients in distress for many hours. Possibly they had become disenchanted by heavy workloads due to staff shortages,

Communication between departments seemed non-existent. For example it took an hour to find a patient who had been transferred from A&E to a ward.The IT system seemed a hindrance rather than a help, giving out-of-date information. Doctors would repeatedly asking communication-impaired ill patients the same questions, rather than using the IT system or reading the medical notes.

Co-ordination of care was also non-existent, with no one having an overview of the patient's treatment plan. Treatment consisted of bits of care in different departments rather than a coordinated approach. Each consultant seemed only interested in their particular part of the jigsaw, Noone had the job of taking an overall view and therefore steering the whole process.

Anything else?

Despite the hospital's organisational failings, I remain touched by some very moving human intervention by some of the staff. This echoes the care in Eden Hall, and the hospital could learn a lot from the very human, patient-centred, coordinated approach there.

Story from NHS Choices

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Response from Royal Free Hospital

Thank you for your kind comments about our compassionate and skilled approach. We’re sorry that you found some aspects of your stay disappointing. We take comments such as this very seriously and ask you to contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS), so we can look into it in more detail.

PALS: 020 7472 6445-7, email pals@royalfree.nhs.uk,

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