"Poor Management"

About: St Peter's Hospital (Chertsey)

Over 2 weeks my father was treated by 7+ different doctors and consultants - all of whom seemed competent but it was not coordinated. We observed that the system fails the patient (and the tax payer) because no doctor or consultant manages patient which means that no one takes responsibility for discharging the patient. the result is that the patient stays longer than is necessary which is neither good for the patient or the hospital. The solution is simple: each patient is assigned a doctor or consultant who has overall responsibilty for the patient and this person calls in his/her colleagues as required to treat the patient. It is then this doctor or consultant responsibility to treat and decide when to discharge the patient. Result of this continuity of care? Better care, better information for families, better management of the resources, better monitoring of performance and better value for the tax payer. (Obviously, if a doctor is away they can deputise to a colleague but the original doctor retains responsibility for a patient and the deputy reports back.)

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Response from St Peter's Hospital

Thank you for taking the time to post your comments here. We are sorry to read that you feel your father had unco-ordinated care, albeit by competent doctors. We do assign individual consultants to manage a patient's overall care but it's also true that during their stay a patient may see several different doctors, for a number of reasons, sometimes it is - as you suggest - simply because their original doctor is away or not on duty at that time. We are always working to improve the way we manage patients who are admitted to our hospitals and this includes accountability for an individual patient's overall care and their subsequent discharge from hospital. We are sorry that on this occasion you did experience a number of different doctors looking after your father. If you wish to discuss this further we would be more than happy to do so and would suggest that you call our Patient Experience Team on 01932 723553. Thank you.

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