"Firth3.Hotter than the face of the sun, short..."

About: Northern General Hospital

My Mum was admitted to Firth 3 for an Emergency op to do with her bowels. Admitted on a thursday night where no-one knew what the next person was doing. She was initially told after a long wait she coukd go home, then told to stay overnight, then original person said go, another to stay. Next morning, original person questioned why she was in, another said she was a priority for a blockage. She was given a meal, then after a mouthful had it removed from her lap by an abrupt nurse saying she was nil by mouth and she had delayed things. She was then left hours with no update and on the hottest day of the year had no water, no fan and was left until the following day, conflicting information on very brief bed visits, one to draw a cross, the other to say something completely different about the problem. Throughout all this, the ward was full and clearly short staffed. Lights left on until past midnight with sleeping tablets only given around 10.30pm far too late. We asked for a fan numerous times and the one communal toilet on a bowel ward was a fair walk which she was in her surgical stockings for 2 days picking up filth from the floors leaving them black with god knows what. My mum was so worried about infection from staff not using the handgels and watching a cleaner empty bins with a gloved hand and dumping items from the yellow bins onto a desk before into a bin bag that she asked us to bring her own cleaning products and we did the bed, floors, skirting and blood stained wall. It was stomach churning. The one cleaner we saw came in for no more than 2 minutes with a tiny floor mop dragging it behind her and certainly with no intention to actively clean the floors. The bedding was also stained. On any ward, never mind a bowel ward with people with open wounds and surgical intervention you would hope for a minimal level of cleanliness and decent airflow to break the stench of faeces and stale blood from the unemptied bins. Pressing a buzzer for help we timed took between 15 to 45 minutes to answer with the nurse station right by my mums bed. Good thing she wasnt choking or in a critical condition as you can see why people deteriorate so quickly and catch superbugs. I have never seen such filthy conditions combined with inept communication to patients and blaze staff seemingly oblivious to the chaos as they stood chatting. I hope I never have the misfortune to be more than a visitor having to help clean my own mother through lack of care and attention reading her notes in hope of some information. Very distressing for her.

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Response from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Dear Anonymous Poster.

Thank you for taking the time to give us your feedback on your mother's recent visit to ward Firth 3 at the Northern General Hospital. I am sorry that on this occasion your care was not of the high standard we would expect at our Trust. We would like to be able to respond in more detail to you about this.

If you would like us to investigate your concerns further please do contact our Patient Services Team on either 0114 271 2400 or pst@sth.nhs.uk and they will take additional details from you.

Thank you again