"Cardiac Care"

About: Princess Royal Hospital / Cardiology Royal Sussex County Hospital

(as the patient),

Last April I suffered a cardiac arrest and was taken to the Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath, as I was unconcious for this time I can't really comment on the care I recieved here, but my parents tell me the staff were absolutely wonderful and treated me with all the dignity and respect they should have (they kept me clean and even brushed my hair for me!). The paramedics who transfered me to The Royal Sussex County were also fabulous, they were very concientious and understanding, as I had only just woken up and was pretty terrified.

I was place on the CCU ward of the Royal Sussex County, I was still not terribly sure what had happened as I still had some sedative in my system, but when I was put in a bed I am tended to by a very nice nurse who was still working even though she was 7 months pregnant! This was late afternoon so it was nearing the time when the shift changes, and again there were some very nice nurses working. My main problem with this section of my care was that it wasn't really taken into consideration how scared and confused I was (they would not let my mother stay with me that night so I was in a new hospital ward with no-one I knew around me and I had just been told that I had had a cardiac arrest, pretty scary). Also I was still linked up to many random machines and had a catheter in and couldnt move much, during the night one of the nurses came to check on me, and in doing so she moved my bell out of the way and did not return it, so I had no way of contacting the nurses during the night and as a result had to call out to them, but it being night-time I didnt want to disturb the other patients, so my calls went unanswered for at leat half and hour. It being a teaching hospital I also had to endure students staring at me from the end of my bed when I was still not really with it, but was not even asked if this was ok.

Within 3 days I was moved down a ward, now that I could walk myself, and the nursing care was exemplary, everyone was very caring and concientious. My consultant was very understanding and explained everything to me when he had the information (I was a very unusal case so I couldnt expect information straight away). My registrar on the other hand was very short bordering on rude and had a severe lack of communication with other departments which led to me being told I was to have an operation and could go home (after being in hospital for 2 weeks it was a welcome thought), bust was subsequently told they couldnt do it, but was no told why. Later after my mother complained to the matron the registrar who was actually to perform my opertation told me exactly why it could not be done, and apologised for her collegue.

After my opertation my nursing care again was exemplary but they had very few porters and I was taken to x-ray where I was left in a cold corridor for 15 mins before having my x-ray then left for another 15 mins before someone could pick me up, I was then taken to the pacing clinic (the technicians were really lovely) then I had to wait for 45 mins in a hard backed wheel-chair after having had an operation on my chest so I was in a lot of pain. One porter actually took it upon himself to talk to his boss when he realised how much pain I was in, but I did feel like I had been forgotten about, because you feel abandoned in the middle of cold waiting areas.

On the whole my care at the sussex county was wonderful but there are areas that need improving which are importatnt to patients which may not seem too important to the hospital as a whole.

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››