"Who likes going into a hospital?"

About: Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital (Wonford)

(as a relative),

What I liked

Who likes going into a hospital?

What could be improved

The staff were friendly except when asked for help and they did seem to have a fair amount of time lounging with refreshments.

I actually accompanied a nervous patient for an operation. On the first date booked he was unable to have his operation due to emergencies filling the surgeons time. On both occasions we had to be there from 7.30 am. All the patients booked for operations on the day arrived at around the same time and there was a consequent rush of admin work for all of them at once. They then had to sit beside unused beds (on the first occasion a whole days wait in our case for nothing) in a ward which seems to be kept empty for just that purpose (?) and which surely could be made better use of than just for waiting patients (we're constantly under the impression there are not enough beds).

The operation performed was not what we had been told, it was more serious, but at no time was that explained to him/us. He was asked if he knew what he was there for(?) and not realising they had reviewed the procedure during the months he had waited he said yes....

Whilst subsequently visiting him I found the visitors toilet wasn't cleaned in over two days. He wasn't impressed with the standard of cleaning in the ward either.

I also had to query the pain killer which they sent him home with ("just in case") even though he was quite comfortable, as it was on the list of prohibited medications of another medicine he has to take daily.

I lost almost £1 trying to use the phone which was quite clearly marked with the cost only to realise later that the scruffy, dirty pencil written label stuck on the top, which being fairly short I couldn't see clearly, stated the correct amount I should have inserted. When I asked where I could use my mobile I was told to hide behind the curtains....

Our subsequent visits as an Outpatient have revealed other scruffy areas of the hospital to us.

Anything else?

I'm appalled at the state of the hospital in December 2008 with 12 wards closed to visitors due to an infection which is blatantly obiviously spread through the wards due to a lack of basic hygiene by the staff of whatever rank - visitors don't go from one ward to the next!

Poor Florence Nightingale and a few of the old Matrons of the RD & E in the past must be spinning in their graves! Congatulations however to the Management/PR staff I'm amazed there hasn't been a bigger outcry in the press !

Story from NHS Choices

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