"My journey from A&E to AMU to Loddon Ward..."

About: Royal Berkshire Hospital

Not the best experience I’ve had. Was seen in A&E very promptly but had to wait a few hours for a bed to become available on AMU. All staff in A&E were caring and helpful and considerate and I am happy to give them 4 stars. However, experience in AMU not very good at all. From wrong medication given to having to actually ask for it on one occasion (when it was 2 hours late) to beeping IV drip infuser machines beeping for up to 45 minutes and being ignored by nursing staff even when they looked over to see which machine was making the noise. Then being told I should have asked the nurse to look at it - surely that should have been done when the machine started beeping. At least I managed to get a nurses attention eventually. I realised how busy the ward was but these instances should not have occurred. Also found it very disconcerting seeing a different group of doctors each day especially when a doctor/consultant asked if I had a bug! I'm sure I would not have been admitted if that had been the case! Did he not read my notes? Ward and toilets not very clean at times, urine samples left standing in bathroom for long periods of time. Only saw specific doctor for my condition once for the whole five days I was in the hospital. Was transferred to Loddon Ward part way through which was a bit better than AMU apart from the fact that I still didn't actually see a specific doctor for my condition (I am a long term patient so would think this would not be too difficult). Had to ask a nurse when I was going to see the doctor (late in the day) and she said it would not be toady and I told her I'd not seen anyone at all that day. She then phoned Victoria Ward and was told by the junior doctor that everyone had gone home so she would ask them to see me the next day. It felt, because I was not on the relevant ward for my condition, that I got forgotten and then had to see the general medical doctors the next day still without seeing a doctor for my specific condition. I appreciate that like all hospitals the RBH is under enormous pressure but these types of incidents should not be allowed to happen. I was also admitted to CDU last year through A&E and have to say that the level of care and efficiency seems to have dropped quite drastically since then. Because of this I'm afraid I would have concerns about recommending RBH to anyone else.

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Response from Royal Berkshire Hospital

Please accept our apologies for the experience you have had on AMU and Loddon Ward. The Matron for AMU has spoken with her staff to ensure that they respond to alarms on machines in a timely manner but she would like to assure you that ignoring them would not have been intentional. As you experienced, AMU is a very busy unit with a high turnover and medically staffed by speciality consultants hence the fact that you are seen by different doctors daily. AMU is the Admission unit and the aim is to either discharge you home within 36 hours or indeed admit you for ongoing care into the Trust. The matron apologises for the cleanliness on the unit and again would like to assure you that she will address this both with clinical and housekeeping staff. We strive hard in the unit to ensure a positive patient experience and we are sorry that on this occasion we did not deliver. With regards to tthe issues on Loddon Ward, the matron for that area would also like to apologise for your poor experience. The care that you describe is not of the standard that we would expect to give on the ward. If it would be of help, he would like the opportunity to discuss what happened with you. Please contact Matron Arran Rogers on tel: 0118 322 6722 or email: arran.rogers@royalberkshire.nhs.uk

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